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National Teams

Ivica Olić makes the "Club 100"

Croatia draws in
Italy: Candreva and
Perišić share the

Croatia draws in Italy: Candreva and Perišić share the spoils
photo by: HNS
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Good performance earned Croatia national football team a point in Italy, retaining the lead in the Group H.

ITALY - CROATIA 1:1 (1:1)
EURO 2016, Group H.
San Siro stadium, Milan.

Referee: Bjorn Kuipers (Netherlands)

Goalkeepers: 1:0 - Candreva (11'), 1:1 - Perišić (15')

Yellow cards: Kovačić (37'), Immobile (46'), Perišić (65')

Italy: Buffon, Chiellini, Ranocchia, Darmian, Pasqual (28' Soriano), De Sciglio, De Rossi, Marchisio, Candreva, Zaza (63' Pelle), Immobile (53' El Shaarawy). Head coach: A. Conte.

Croatia: Subašić, Pranjić, Ćorluka, Vida, Srna, Brozović (83' Badelj), Modrić (28' Kovačić), Olić (68' Kramarić), Rakitić, Perišić, Mandžukić. Head coach: N. Kovač.


On Sunday, Croatia continued its positive run against Italy, being without a defeat in seven games, while the Azzurri managed not to lose their first match at San Siro Stadium. The fourth match in European Qualifiers, with De Rossi and Olić celebrating their 100th cap, ended in 1:1 draw.

Even though Croatia opened the match with Rakitić, Vida, and Modrić efforts, it was Italy that took the lead. Zaza left the ball to Candreva, who struck a low shot from outside of the area for his first international goal.

However, Niko Kovač's men were quick to answer.

Rakitić took advantage from the open space on the left side in the 15th minute, and found Perišić. Taking a step into the box, the Croatian winger found the net under the veteran Buffon.

Both sides then dropped the intensity, while Kovač and Conte had to make their first changes before the half hour mark. Modrić was substituted due to groin injury, making way for Kovačić, and debutant Soriano replaced Pasqual.

After two threatening Italian crosses, Croatia had the upper hand in the final period of the first half. Srna and Rakitić tried from distance, and Olić nearly scored a tap-in, but Ranocchia cleared his shot off the line.

Goalie Subašić was called into action to stop Zaza at the beginning of second half, and Kovačić, Mandžukić, and Rakitić continued to test Buffon. Croatia kept the play at the Italian half and tried to find an opening, with El Shaarawy giving some flare to the hosts from the bench.

Fifteen minutes from time, the Dutch referee was forced to take the players off the field due to flares on the pitch, but the match was later continued.

Croatian goalscorer Perišić missed the golden opportunity in 87th minute. Rakitić played him through, but Perišić sent the ball just wide. Croatia and Italy retained the top of Group H, with Croatia playing Norway in March, and Italy traveling to Bulgaria.

In the remaining Group H matches, Norway claimed an away win at Azerbaijan 1:0, while Bulgaria managed a draw with Malta at home (1:1), with Popov missing a penalty.

EURO 2016 qualifying, Group H:
1. Croatia 10
2. Italy 10
3. Norway 9
4. Bulgaria 4
5. Malta 1
6. Azerbaijan 0

Euro 2016. - qualifiers, 16.11.2014.. Spectators: 63222
Referees: Bjorn Kuipers (NED), Sander van Roekel (NED), E.J.J. Zeinstra Erwin (NED)
Fourth referee: Mario Diks (NED)
1Gianluigi Buffon23Danijel Subašić
2Mattia De Sciglio18Ivica Olić
3Giorgio Chiellini3Danijel Pranjić
6Antonio Candreva
7Ivan Rakitić
7SImone Zaza
10Luka Modrić
8Claudio Marchisio5Vedran Ćorluka
9CIro Immobile
4Ivan Perišić
13Andrea Ranocchia17Mario Mandžukić
16Daniele De Rossi11Darijo Srna
20Matteo Darmian21Domagoj Vida
23MAnuel Pqsqual
14Marcelo Brozović
12Salvatore Sirigu1Ivan Vargić
22Mattia Perin12Lovre Kalinić
14Stephan El Shaarawy
9Andrej Kramarić
17Graziano Pelle
19Milan Badelj
21Roberto Soriano
20Mateo Kovačić
4Emiliano Moretti2Šime Vrsaljko
5Daniele Rugani6Dejan Lovren
10Sebastian Giovinco8Alen Halilović
11Alessio Cerci13Duje Čop
15Giacomo Bonaventura16Anas Sharbini
18Marco Parolo15Tin Jedvaj
19Andrea Bertolacci22Marin Leovac
Antonio ConteNiko Kovač
foto: HNS