Croatia lacking creativity
Wednesday, 28 April 2004
Croatia did their UEFA European Under-21 Championship prospects little good with a disappointing 0-0 draw against F.Y.R. Macedonia's U21 side in Zagreb.
Lack of initiative
The home side failed to seize the initiative and take the game to their opponents, who missed out on qualifying for this summer's tournament in Germany. There were few chances and little to entertain from either side, with Croatia, especially, failing to get into their passing rhythm.
Croatia made a positive start when Goran Ljubojevic's went close after just three minutes and seven minutes later Niko Kranjcar nearly scored with a header as the home side looked for an early goal. However, they lost their momentum and, Mario Carevic's free-kick aside, created little else before the break.
Ljubojevic had the game’s best chance in the second half, but his 69th-minute effort was saved by the excellent Jorde Georgievski. Indeed the visiting goalkeeper made a series of good saves in the second half to earn the man-of-the-match award.
Croatia coach Martin Novoselac said: "The result wasn't our priority. I wanted my players to show their skills, but I expected a lot more. They are probably tired from their numerous club games but if we were to predict our chances in Germany from this game, it will be very difficult there." Croatia will be competing in Group A, where they face Serbia and Montenegro, Belarus and Italy.
some of our media titled : "they could have played 3 days, they wouldn't have scored...". t think that sums up the game.
concerning our youth player, they're good now some faces are back to the U21 team : stojkov and grozdanovski were member of the senior team before.