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Sizing up Euro title contenders

Euro 2016
ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Real Madrid midfielder Luka Modric named as new captain of Croatia

Zinedine Zidane admitted his side were far from brilliant during their hard fought 2-1 victory over Celta Vigo in La Liga.

Luka Modric has been named as the new captain of Croatia following the retirement of Darijo Srna.

Modric, 30, was appointed by coach Ante Cacic as Croatia prepare to take on Turkey in a World Cup qualifier on Sept. 5.

The former Tottenham midfielder said he hoped to end his club career at Real Madrid and did not want to know about any other clubs that might be interested in signing him.

He has been at Real Madrid since 2012 and won two Champions League titles in his time at the Bernabeu, but...

Liverpool defender Dejan Lovren set to make Croatia return

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp admits he feels brilliant after the win but laments the defensive errors that almost cost the match.
ESPN FC's Stewart Robson explains why he was told Jurgen Klopp has chosen to utilise Roberto Firmino up front for Liverpool.
Jurgen Klopp admits he made a big mistake in celebrating with his players when they went 4-1 ahead with 30 minutes to play.
ESPN FC's Craig Burley breaks down the positives and negatives from both sides in Liverpool and Arsenal's seven-goal thriller.

Liverpool defender Dejan Lovren is back in the Croatia national team setup after missing this summer's European Championship following a disagreement with manager Ante Cacic.

The central defender has been included in Cacic's 23-man squad for next month's World Cup qualifier against Turkey.

Lovren was left out of the Euro 2016 preliminary squad after a reported bust-up with Cacic, having been accused of refusing to warm up in the friendly against Hungary in March.

When naming his team for the tournament...

ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Sam Allardyce's England to face Croatia in friendly - reports

Sam Allardyce's first game in charge of England will be a friendly against Croatia, according to British newspaper reports.

Allardyce was appointed England manager last Friday, succeeding Roy Hodgson following the nation's round-of-16 exit to Iceland at Euro 2016.

The team's next confirmed fixture is against on Sept. 4 when they take on Slovakia in their opening 2018 World Cup qualifier.

But The Guardian, The Daily Telegraph and The Daily Mirror report that the Three Lions will take on Croatia in...

ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Atletico Madrid sign Croatia defender Sime Vrsaljko from Sassuolo

Sime Vrsaljko is moving from Italy to Spain with Atletico Madrid.

Croatia defender Sime Vrsaljko has left Sassuolo to sign a five-year deal with Atletico Madrid.

After the transfer was completed on Monday, the 24-year-old tied his future to the Spanish club until 2021.

Vrsaljko moved to Genoa from Dinamo Zagreb in 2013, then went on to Sassuolo a year later.

"Playing in Atletico is a big challenge for me, I'm very happy," he told Atletico's official website.

Vrsaljko played for Croatia in this summer's European Championship, first coming on as a...

ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Luka Modric thanks Croatia fans for 'fantastic support' at Euro 2016

Luka Modric has posted a heartfelt message of thanks to the Croatia fans following the 1-0 extra time defeat to Portugal on Saturday.

Croatia conceded the only goal of the game deep in added time against Portugal, ending the team's European Championship campaign in cruel circumstances.

And on Monday, Modric posted a message of thanks to the country's supporters on Instagram.

"You afforded to us the fan support that we will remember for a lifetime," Modric said. "You have given us a sense of togetherness,...