Croatia coach not thinking of revenge in Nations League match vs. Spain
Croatian national soccer team captain Luka Modric (L) and head coach Zlatko Dalic (R) talk to the media during the team's press conference in Zagreb, Croatia, Nov. 14, 2018. EPA-EFE/Antonio Bat
Croatia's soccer players and head Coach Zlatko Dalic (C) during the training of Croatia team in Zagreb, Croatia, Nov. 14, 2018. EPA-EFE/Antonio Bat
Zagreb, Nov 14 (efe-epa).- Croatia national soccer team coach Zlatko Dalic on Wednesday dismissed the theory that because his team was soundly defeated in their earlier match with Spain (6-0 on Sept. 11), his players are out for revenge in the teams' upcoming contest.
Croatia, the 2018 FIFA World Cup runner-up, is set to host La Roja on Thursday in a Nations League group stage match, a group in which Croatia is at the bottom with one point, five points behind leader Spain.
"We are going to try to put heavy pressure on Spain, we're not thinking of revenge. The important thing is to gain three points that are important to qualify and have the chance to reach the tournament final," the Croatian coach said at a press conference.
Dalic said he thought the Spanish team had modified its style since the arrival of coach Luis Enrique.
"Spain has shown ... two styles of play... Luis Enrique has changed the style of play," the Croatian coach said, explaining that La Roja now depends on adapting to the conditions of the match and the opponent rather than ball possession.
Spain, which has a two-point lead over England in Group 4, needs to win the Thursday match to guarantee La Roja's qualification for the Nations League finals.
However, should La Roja lose the upcoming match to Croatia, the Spanish side will have to wait to see who wins the England-Croatia match on Nov. 18 to learn if Spain will advance.