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Modric headlines Croatia's World Cup squad
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Joshua Challies
Stats Perform
Luka Modric will star for Croatia at the World Cup
Luka Modric will star for Croatia at the World Cup

Real Madrid midfielder Luka Modric is set to compete in his fourth World Cup finals, having been named in Croatia's squad for the 2022 tournament in Qatar.

Zlatko Dalic's side – beaten by France in the final of the 2018 edition in Russia – begin their campaign on November 23 against Morocco, then tackling Canada and Belgium in Group F, standing as favourites to advance as group winners.

Croatia boast an experienced squad, with captain Modric included alongside Chelsea's Mateo Kovacic, Inter's Marcelo Brozovic and Tottenham's Ivan Perisic, though key players from the 2018 campaign such as Ivan Rakitic and Danijel Subasic have bowed out of international football, while Mario Mandzukic has retired altogether and will instead be on Dalic's bench as an assistant coach.

Bayern Munich defender Josip Stanisic and RB Leipzig's highly rated Josko Gvardiol have been selected alongside experienced duo Domagoj Vida and Dejan Lovren, but there is no place for Southampton's Duje Caleta-Car, who has been capped 23 times by Croatia and was named in Dalic's preliminary selection.

Wolfsburg forward Josip Brekalo, who has represented his country 33 times, is another high-profile name to miss out. Mislav Orsic, the Dinamo Zagreb forward who has impressed in the Champions League and Europa League in recent seasons, has made the cut.

Speaking about his selection, Dalic said: "These are the players that my staff and I believe in. There will be no pressure, we will take it one game at a time.

"The first match for us is the most important and all our focus is on Morocco. We are optimistic but need to be realistic. It is a big deal for Croatia to be at the World Cup, we will take it step by step and do the best we can."

Croatia will also face Canada and Belgium in Group F in Qatar.

Croatia squad: Dominik Livakovic (Dinamo Zagreb), Ivica Ivusic (Osijek), Ivo Grbic (Atletico Madrid); Domagoj Vida (AEK Athens), Dejan Lovren (Zenit), Borna Barisic (Rangers), Josip Juranovic (Celtic), Josko Gvardiol (RB Leipzig), Borna Sosa (Stuttgart), Josip Stanisic (Bayern Munich), Martin Erlic (Sassuolo), Josip Sutalo (Dinamo Zagreb); Luka Modric (Real Madrid), Mateo Kovacic (Chelsea), Marcelo Brozovic (Inter), Mario Pasalic (Atalanta), Nikola Vlasic (Torino), Lovro Majer (Rennes), Kristijan Jakic (Eintracht Frankfurt), Luka Sucic (Salzburg), Ivan Perisic (Tottenham); Andrej Kramaric (Hoffenheim), Bruno Petkovic (Dinamo Zagreb), Mislav Orsic (Dinamo Zagreb), Ante Budimir (Osasuna), Marko Livaja (Hajduk Split).


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