We approached game against Nigeria like a final game - Croatia coac

Published on: 24 October 2015
We approached game against Nigeria like a final game - Croatia coac
Croatia defeated the Golden Eaglets


Croatia U17 coach Dario Basic sayd his tram approached their final group game against Nigeria like a world Cup.

The Croats secured their FIFA U-17 World Cup second round berth by beating Nigeria in Group A and finishing second.

Despite a quality start from Croatia, who had more possession and shots on goal, Nigeria took the lead through Osimhen in 20th minute.

Hitting the post just a couple of minutes earlier, Nigeria striker found an answer in one-on-one situation with Croatia goalkeeper Šemper.

However, Dario Baši?'s men continued to press forward, and were rewarded soon after the restart.

Croatia captain Moro wiggled through Nigeria's defence in the box in the 50th minute, and sent the ball to Brekalo who found the target. Four minute later, it was again Moro who capitalized on opponent's mistake and made an assist for Maji?, who neatly put it past Udoh and made it 2:1.

Both teams had more chances to score, but Croatia kept its cool and won the match.

Host nation Chile defeated the United States 4:1 and secured third place, awaiting the completion of group stage to learn its fate.

Croatia will start the second round in Concepcion, against the second-placed team from Group C (Germany, Mexico, Australia, Argentina), on Thursday, 29 October.

"I am very proud of my players who played a great match. We approached this game as a final, telling us it was absolutely necessary to win or go home. I believed in my team. It has shown that it can compete with the best teams in the world", said Dario Baši?, Croatia head coach, speaking to FIFA.com after the match.

Group A:

1. Nigeria 6

2. Croatia 5

3. Chile 4

4. USA 1