Luka Modric is a man who commands the utmost respect

Croatia, Luka Modric (Photo by Igor Soban/Pixsell/MB Media/Getty Images)
Croatia, Luka Modric (Photo by Igor Soban/Pixsell/MB Media/Getty Images) /

Croatia was a top team as seen in the 2018 World Cup held in Russia when they reached the final to play against France. No one expected the Croats to reach that far in the tournament. But they earned themselves that place after a very hard-fought battle.

Real Madrid star Luka Modric became everyone’s favorite as the captain stood upon every occasion, pushing his team forward. His impressive displays earned him a well-deserved Ballon d’Or. But he wasn’t the only player to drag his team forward.

The likes of Ivan Rakitic and Mario Mandzukic also helped Croatia to reach the finals. Rakitic would assist Luka in the midfield while Mandzukic would put some top displays up-front, converting all of Luka and Rakitic’s efforts into goals. But sadly, it was the last World Cup for both Rakitic and Mandzukic as they announced their retirement from international football.

However, Modric still isn’t alone. He has players like Livakovic, Ivan Perisic, and Mateo Kovacic with him. But then why is Luka Modric scapegoated for every of Croatia’s struggles? Why are people doing it to him? Does he deserve all the hatred he’s getting? No. Ever since Modric won the Ballon d’Or everyone has been after him- criticizing him as if he didn’t deserve it.

GLASGOW, SCOTLAND – JUNE 22: Luka Modric of Croatia celebrates after victory (Photo by Andy Buchanan – Pool/Getty Images)
GLASGOW, SCOTLAND – JUNE 22: Luka Modric of Croatia celebrates after victory (Photo by Andy Buchanan – Pool/Getty Images) /

Luka Modric led Croatia to a turnaround against Scotland

This time around since the start of the friendlies before the Euros, Croatia hadn’t been themselves. They weren’t at the level all of us expected to be. It was a bit of a surprise but we believed that they would get better. In the opening match of the Euros, Croatia had to face England. Even though the scoreline was tight one of 1-0, Croatia was just awful. The positioning, the attacking threat, the defense, it was just too poor. Modric couldn’t do much on his own and all the media just went after him. He is aging, but he was still at a level higher than the rest of the team. The Ballon D’or winner was criticized but he said nothing.

The next game against the Czech Republic was again a tight one which ended a 1-1 draw. All of us expected Croatia to emerge as the winners, but they suffered a lot in the game. The media as expected fired another bullet of criticism towards Modric but this time the Croat wasn’t going to keep quiet. He was frustrated with the team as they weren’t playing with the right attitude and mindset. After the draw, the team had no confidence left in them and seemed to have lost all hope of advancing in the tournament.

But the captain’s words had a positive impact on the team as we saw a whole new Croatia in the tie against Scotland. Modric was absolutely blistering with the ball in his feet. We saw how he again carried the team on his shoulders, maintaining a smooth flow of the game. He proved to the world that he is no one to mess up with. The outside of the boot goal was his way of silencing the critics. Luka broke the record of being the youngest and the oldest Croatian player to score at the Euros. He also showed us his accuracy by the pinpoint cross to Ivan Perisic, his fellow teammate. The 3-1 victory told us that Croatia now has the momentum back with them and they will not step down against Spain in the Round of 16.

Real Madrid, Luka Modric (Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images)
Real Madrid, Luka Modric (Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images) /

And don’t you dare scapegoat Luka Modric if things don’t go well

Luka is a top-class player and everybody knows that. Don’t we? The 2020-21 season is a witness in itself. Despite being 35, he has played a total of 58 games which is highly impressive. Not only this, we have seen some spectacular displays from him.

His skills and shots have been top-notch and his passes have been pinpoint! He managed an average rating of 7.13 in LaLiga and 7.08 in the UCL. In LaLiga, Luka Modric had a total of 8 goal involvements involving 3 assists and 5 goals while in the UCL, he had 3 assists and 1 goal in his name. He was so great that he earned himself a contract extension at Real Madrid which is not very common for a 35-year-old at Real Madrid.

Then why is he being scapegoated every time? He has done everything in his power to bring Croatia to a respectable level. What more do you want from him? Just because Croatia is facing difficulty, it doesn’t mean that we directly blame him for this.

Next. Takeaways from Gareth Bale's performance at the Euros. dark

He has been working hard every day in the training, for his club and country and this is how we treat him? This is just not acceptable! We cannot expect him to carry the team alone. Others will have to share the burden too. We just need to realize that what he has done for Croatia is enough and we must thank him for his incredible services to his country.