We are fed up of underachieving, says Croatia’s Corluka
ZAGREB (Reuters) – Croatia are decided to succeed in the World Cup knockout rounds for the primary time for the reason that 1998 match after they despatched shock waves by advancing to the semi-finals, stalwart defender Vedran Corluka stated on Wednesday.
The Croatians made group stage exits in 2002, 2006 and 2014, after a talent-packed technology completed third in France 20 years in the past, and Corluka was assured the current crop would lastly reside as much as expectations.
“We’re bored with being billed as a proficient technology which retains flattering to deceive,” Corluka was quoted as saying by the Croatian Soccer Affiliation (www.hns-cff.hr) on the staff’s coaching camp within the coastal resort of Rovinj.
“We let ourselves and our followers down in each World Cup for the reason that 1998 match, particularly the final one. We’ve got to concentrate on our strengths and use the great ambiance within the dressing room as a platform.”
Croatia open their Group D marketing campaign in opposition to Nigeria, adopted by video games in opposition to Argentina and Iceland.
4 years in the past, they made an early exit as defeats by host nation Brazil and Mexico canceled out a 4-Zero win over Cameroon.
The 32-year-old Corluka, who has made 97 worldwide appearances, is one in every of 5 heart backs in coach Zlatko Dalic’s provisional 24-man squad and is conscious that he faces a battle to make the ultimate lower as one in every of them is almost definitely to be axed.
“All of us have totally different qualities,” he stated. “A few of us are faster whereas others are stronger, however both approach the coach will make the appropriate resolution regardless of who he picks for the Russia-bound squad.
“Essentially the most frequent partnership I’ve had was with Domagoj Vida, however I’d be simply as comfy with Dejan Lovren who proved his price after a superb season at Liverpool capped by taking part in properly within the Champions League last.”
Croatia will play warm-up video games in opposition to Brazil at Anfield on June three and in opposition to Senegal on house soil in Osijek 5 days later. Corluka assessed the Brazil match as an excellent barometer of Croatia’s potential to make an impression in Russia.
“We’ll go away nothing within the tank after we face Brazil as a result of there is no such thing as a different approach in opposition to an opponent of their caliber,” he stated.
“Then we will begin occupied with Nigeria and Argentina, our opening rivals. I’m wanting ahead to locking horns with the outstanding Lionel Messi, however we at the moment are centered on the warm-up conflict with Brazil.”
Reporting by Zoran Milosavljevic in Belgrade; Enhancing by David Holmes