Real Madrid midfield maestro and Croatia captain Luka Modrić has admitted that Lionel Messi will be a bone in their throat when both sides meet tomorrow during the show-piece semi-final round of the FIFA World Cup. Of course, Modric is confident that they will be ready to contain Messi and his entourage.
The Real Madrid midfielder admitted that their defense will struggle to stop the Paris Saint-Germain star ahead of the duel that will take place at the Lusail Stadium in Qatar
“I’m not just looking forward to playing against one player. Of course, Leo Messi is a very big [player], their best player, and we will have a lot of difficulties stopping him, but we are ready and we will give everything.
“We are going to try to play the best game of our lives in the tournament. I hope it will be enough to reach the final.”
“It’s normal, everyone looks more for the big countries,” Modric added.
“As we are a small country, nobody takes us into account, but we have no problem with others being the favorites and us being in the shadows.
“That is something from outside, [something] that we cannot control. We can only compete to the maximum and give everything, which is our forte.
“Before I left for the World Cup, we talked about it a lot in the dressing room and I said ‘watch out for Croatia’.
“I saw a very good team, mature, with young players who have brought new quality and energy.”
“It’s worse to be out, watching it from the bench and not being able to help,”
“It’s a lot of tension, and it’s not easy, it’s much worse. It’s not easy [taking a penalty] either. You have to be calm, and confident, but it’s better than being out.”
Luka Modrić guided Croatia to the World Cup final of 2018 in Russia, where they eventually lost to France. They will hope to make it a back-to-back appearance in the final of the FIFA World Cup.