Croatia coach Dalic 'sorry' for Martinez's Belgium departure

By Sports Desk December 01, 2022 165

Zlatko Dalic was sorry to see Belgium lose a "great coach" in Roberto Martinez as his departure was confirmed with Thursday's World Cup exit.

Dalic's Croatia held Belgium to a goalless draw at Ahmad bin Ali Stadium, following Morocco through to the last 16 in Group F.

Martinez, who was out of contract after six years as Red Devils coach, announced he would be leaving his role in his post-match news conference.

"I think Belgium have lost a great coach," said Dalic. "I'm sorry he resigned."

Discussing his own future, the Croatia boss added: "My project is Euro 2024 and the Nations League Finals. When I finish these projects, then I'll think about how to proceed."

Although the 2018 finalists themselves missed out on topping the group, Dalic hailed the performance of his team.

"It would be selfish for me to single out individuals," he said. "They all gave everything of themselves."

Full-backs Josip Juranovic and Borna Sosa were more open to picking out individuals, each lauding 37-year-old player of the match Luka Modric.

Asked if the Real Madrid man was still one of the world's best, Juranovic replied: "Yes – [that answer] is short enough. He is the best midfielder ever."

Sosa added: "Of course, it's easy [to play with Modric]. The better players you have in your team, the easier it is to play.

"With Luka, one of the best players in the history of the sport, it is very easy."

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Last modified on Thursday, 01 December 2022 16:06
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