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National Teams > Men > A

Mandžukić, Čop, Kramarić

Efficient Croatia
victorious in Belfast

Efficient Croatia victorious in Belfast
photo by: HNS
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Croatia closed the international 2016 in Belfast, away at Northern Ireland, and won its first ever match against the hosts.

Friendly international.
Windsor Park, Belfast.

Referee: M. Clattenburg (England)

Goals: 0:1 - Mandžukić (9'), 0:2 - Čop (35'), 0:3 - Kramarić (68')


Northern Ireland: Mannus, McAuley (46' McGivern), Evans, Hodson, Brunt (46' McLaughlin), McGinn (61' Paton), Boyce (68' Grigg), Norwood, McNair, Lund (46' Davis), Magennis (56' Lafferty). Head coach: M. O'Neill.

Croatia: L. Kalinić (82' Vargić), Leovac, Mitrović, Vida (59' Vrsaljko), Jedvaj, Bradarić, Badelj (51' Brozović), Rog (87' Pivarić), Kramarić, Čop, Mandžukić (72' Ćorić). Head coach: A. Čačić. 

For the first time in history, Croatia national team faced Northern Ireland, and the Belfast friendly international will be gladly remembered, since the Vatreni were efficient despite Modrić, Rakitić, Kovačić, Subašić, Perišić, and Ćorluka all missing out. 

Kick-off was delayed 15 minute due to traffic congestion, and while the home fans could enjoy several Northern Ireland half-chances, Croatia managed to score twice in the first half.

Čop tried a low shot from the left after nine minutes of play, Mannus palmed it to Mandžukić, and Croatia captain scrambled the ball over the line. In 35th minute, it was Kramarić with a corner kick, Mitrović with a headed assist, and Čop with a cool, firm reaction to make it 2:0. 

Not much changed in the second half. Evans and Lafferty twice threatened Croatia goal, but L. Kalinić and Vargić were to intervene, and in the meantime Croatia scored the third.

In the 68th minute, Kramarić struck brilliantly from distance, leaving Northern Ireland goalie Mannus no chance. Croatia calmly held on to this 3:0 victory.

Mandžukić, Croatia captain in Belfast, joined Eduardo Alves da Silva in the second place among the national team all-time top goalscorers. Both are on 29 goals, trailing only to current Croatian Football Federation president Davor Šuker (45). Moreover, at Windsor Park Čop scored his first Croatia goal.


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