Croatias Road To FIFA 2010

Bilic keeping control in Croatia

Posted on: May 18, 2007


Croatia coach Slaven Bilić is in focused mood after naming a strong 25-man squad for the UEFA EURO 2008™ qualifing matches against Estonia and Russia.

Focus first
Bilić’s men begin with a trip to Tallinn on 2 June before welcoming Russia to Zagreb four days later. That promises to be a particularly competitive encounter as Group E leaders Croatia are just two points ahead of Guus Hiddink’s men but the first test is also occupying the coach’s thoughts. “I don’t want to talk about Russia, first we have a match against Estonia,” said the former defender, who was part of the Croatia team that finished third at the 1998 FIFA World Cup. “It is always difficult to play against Estonia. Even when I was playing we had a hard job to defeat them.”

Croatia squad
Goalkeepers: Stipe Pletikosa (FC Spartak Moskva), Vedran Runje (Beşiktaş JK), Mario Galinović (Panathinaikos FC).

Defenders: Dario Šimić (AC Milan), Robert Kovač (Juventus), Josip Šimunić (Hertha BSC Berlin), Hrvoje Vejić (FC Tom Tomsk), Vedran Ćorluka (NK Dinamo Zagreb), Boris Živković (HNK Hajduk Split), Dario Kenežević (AS Livorno).

Midfielders: Niko Kovač (FC Salzburg), Jerko Leko (AS Monaco FC), Marko Babić (Bayer 04 Leverkusen), Darijo Srna (FC Shakhtar Donetsk), Milan Rapaić (R. Standard de Liège), Niko Kranjčar (Portsmouth FC), Luka Modrić (NK Dinamo Zagreb), Jurica Vranješ (Werder Bremen), Danijel Pranjić (SC Heerenveen), Anthony Šerić (Panathinaikos FC).

Forwards: Mladen Petrić (FC Basel 1893), Ivica Olić (1. FC Hamburg), Boško Balaban (Club Brugge KV), Eduardo da Silva (NK Dinamo Zagreb), Igor Budan (Parma FC).

By Elvir Islamovic
from Zagreb


16 Responses to "Bilic keeping control in Croatia"

This is what my line up would look like for Estonia!
Kovac, Simic, Simunic, Babic
Srna , Kovac, Modric, Kranjcar
Dudu , Petric

Stipe Pletikosa
Robert Kovač Dario Šimić Boris Živković Šimunić
Niko Kovač Darijo Srna Milan Rapaić modric
Mladen Petrić Eduardo da Silva

cro 4 vs est 0 goals dudu 3 1 from petric

cro 2 vs rus 0 dudu 2

Stipe Pletikosa, 8
Vedran Runje, 6
Mario Galinović, 5
Vedran Ćorluka, 5

darIo simIc 7
Robert Kovač, 7
Niko Kovač, 6
Josip Šimunić, 6
Boris Živković, 6
Hrvoje Vejić, 5
Dario Knežević, 5
Anthony Šerić, 5
Luka Modrić, 6
Darijo Srna, 7
Niko Kranjčar, 6
Milan Rapaić, 6
Jerko Leko, 6
Josip Vranješ, 6
Marko Babić, 7
Danijel Pranjić, 5
Mladen Petrić, 7
Ivica Olić, 6
Eduardo Alves Da Silva, 8
Boško Balaban i 7
Igor Budan. 6

Dino Drpić i 5
Marin Skender 5

rate 1-10

the team is 50/50 there slow

i guess that is pretty accurate…
although i would give Niko Kranjcar a 7 or 8

Darijo Srna 7??? STATI JE BOLAN He is the best players!!

Eduardo – 9
Srna – 9
Kranjcar – 8
Modric – 9
Corluka – 8
Simic – 8
N. Kovac – 9
R. Kovac – 8
…………….All other would be seven and sixes

Hey whats peoples! Jest mi drago sto sam nasao!!

This is a great site! Keep it up!

@ Supak,
You are a true supak indeed. But I must agree with your ratings not alans. I see why he picked 7’s and 8ts. But I think they are true 8ts and 9’s…

@Denis S,
Are you the creator of If you are you did a great job. There is not many sites about Croatian soccer in English…not that I dont speak Croatian or anything like that.

Well, I guess now we’ll just wait for the game against Estonia, we’ll probably beat them by 6, or 7.


this would be my team:

Kovac Simunic Simic Corluka

Srna Kovac Kranjcar Modric

Da Silva Petric

oh! how could i of forgot Corluka on my team! I would put him in instead of kovac…

wats the password

i sent it to u through the e-mail

Here are my #1 and #2 Team selections:

Team #1:
Simic, R. Kovac, Simunic, Corluka
Srna, Kranjcar, N. Kovac, Modric
Da Silva, Petric

Team #2:
Galinovic, (Plays for big Greek team Panathinaikos)
Kenezevic (Livorno-Seria A), Sablic (Dynamo Kiev-Ukr), Vejic, Drpic (Dinamo)
Rapaic, Babic, J. Leko (Monaco), Pranjic (Assisted on many of Alves’s 34 goals in Holland)
Budan (Leading goal scorer on Parma in Seria A), S. Bjelanovic (Leading goal scorer on Ascoli in Seria A)

Kenezevic and Sablic played in the 0-0 game in Russia.

In midfield I would probably replace Rapaic if Croatia could get the attacking mid-fielder Ivan Rakitic.

Up front, I’m just getting tired of seeing Balaban and Olic doing nothing when getting a starting 11 spot. I would love to see Bilic call up former Dinamo strikers Ivan Bosnjak and Goran Ljubojevic who currently are at Racing Genk in Belgium. Ljobojevic played along side Da Silva during the Champions League qualifying and scored 3 goals but was cheated by not getting more time and Bosnjak beat out Da Silva in the Croatian scoring title the year before 23-22.

Joe, I completely agree with you! Bilic does need to give the dinamo strikers a chance, or even the hajduk kid. Olic and Balaban not really doing anything.

Bilic should also look at calling up their other goalie, the Croatian U-21 or U-19 International and Dinamo player, Loncaric. He doesn’t need to start but I would take him over the other 2 back-up’s Bilic called up.

I almost forgot another possible Croatian striker who like Rakitic has Croatian background. He’s Dario Cvitanich, plays for Banfield club in Argentina as a mid-fielder or attacking mid-fielder. He’s leading the club team with 7 goals so far in 15 games. I believe he is 23 or 24 years old and just now finding his form. Bilic better call him up for the August friendly with Bosnia before Argentina try and call him up.

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