Croatia sack coach Ante Cacic two days before vital final World Cup qualifier against Ukraine

The players turned against Cacic after a disappointing draw with Finland that handed Iceland control of the group

Ed Malyon@eaamalyon
Saturday 07 October 2017 11:12
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Ante Cacic has been fired by Croatia
Ante Cacic has been fired by Croatia

Croatian have fired Ante Cacic just two days before their crunch final qualifier against Ukraine in Kiev.

Finland's last-minute equaliser, courtesy of Pyry Soiri, took the wind out of Croatia's sails in Osijek and handed control of the group to Iceland. Croatia are now in second place on 17 points but head to Ukraine on Monday with their hosts also on 17 and now favourites to steal the playoff spot.

Cacic was so stunned after the game that he forgot who his team had just dropped points against, repeatedly referring to the Finnish as Iceland.

And while Cacic bumbled, Croatia's superstar, Luka Modric, fumed to the media about his coach.

Luka Modric blasted Cacic after the game

"What do we do now? We started with him and now we have to just keep going," Modric said.

"Until our match with Iceland, everything was fine and now all of a sudden nothing is of any worth.

"That's the honest truth, the situation is catastrophic, but we still have a chance to make it right."

And when asked what went wrong for Croatia, Modric was similarly scathing.

"What happened? Nothing, we have only just compromised our path to the World Cup," he said.

"When we were looking for the goal, we had a few chances and initiative. When we scored, it was unbelievable that we would retreat against Finland, of all teams.

"That Croatia was waiting for the final whistle against that kind of national team is…It is unbelievable that we are struggling against teams like Kosovo and Finland, where before we would have beaten them with ease."

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