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Croatia demand respect following Canada World Cup ‘trash talk’

Croatia demand respect following Canada World Cup ‘trash talk’

Croatia’s head coach Zlatko Dalic requested respect for his 2018 FIFA World Cup finalists after Canada’s head coach John Herdman declared his team would defeat Croatia in Qatar.

Sunday’s Group F matchup between Dalic’s squad and Canada at the Khalifa International Stadium will see both teams attempting to maintain their hopes of advancing to the knockout round.

“I told them they belong here,” Herdman said during a TV interview when asked what he told his players in a post-match huddle following their opening 1-0 defeat to Belgium.

The Canada coach used foul language to warn his players not to be intimidated by the Croatians, whose roster includes Luka Modric of Real Madrid.

After Canada’s first World Cup match in 36 years, Herdman made a controversial statement that infuriated Croatia.

Herdman said on Saturday that his tirade was merely an attempt to get his team to focus on Croatia instead than ruminating on their valiant loss to the heavily favored Belgium.

“The statement I made was to remind these boys that there is another task ahead,” he said. “They have been buying into that mentality from day one.

“I don’t even think this group are listening to that stuff. The boys know we have goals here. We have to get after it, get on the front foot.”

However, Croatia, who drew 0-0 with Morocco in their opening match, have not taken well to the 47-year-old Englishman’s remarks. Dalic stated that Croatia deserves greater respect from Herdman due to their accomplishments.

“The Croatian team deserves respect from everyone,” he said. “We have proven that by the way we have played and our conduct during the World Cup.

This week, in response to Herdman, the Croatian tabloid 24 Sata published a full-page photograph of a naked man with maple leaf flags covering his lips and private regions, with the caption  “You have the mouth, but do you have the balls as well?”

The uproar surrounding Herdman’s exuberant remark has increased the stakes.

Croatia demand respect following Canada World Cup ‘trash talk’

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