No, the Croatia National Team Will Not Donate World Cup Earnings to Children

By 19 July 2018

Sorry to break your hearts, but the news is untrue. 

The success of the Croatia national football team at the World Cup in Russia, where they became finalists for the first time, has resulted in the immense interest of world media. After stories about Croatian President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović, the corruption in HNS and Zdravko Mamić, football artist Luka Modrić and his testimony in court, and even after reports of the controversial, far-right singer Marko Perkovic Thompson on the bus with the World Cup stars in Zagreb, we finally have our first bit of fake news, reports on July 19, 2018. 

Namely, not only have social networks spread that Kolinda was, in fact, the one to personally drive the national team bus from the Zagreb airport to Ban Jelačić Square during their homecoming from Russia, but the latest is that the Croatia national team members and HNS will donate their World Cup earnings to charity. 

Relevant world media, such as German T-Online and popular Facebook page SportsBible, were among those that published the news, announcing that ‘the Croatian national team decided to donate 23.5 million euro to poor children", which will allow them to go on vacation. On SportsBible, the news was ‘liked’ thousands of times. 

The ‘fake news’, however, comes from a Facebook post connected to coach Zlatko Dalić, that Dalić himself did not write it.

The World Cup donation story was confirmed as untrue by HNS spokesperson Tomislav Pacak on HTV. 

“It was reported yesterday that the national team will donate their earnings to the children of Croatia. Is that correct?” Asked the HTV host, Damir Smrtić.

Pacak replied: “I certainly would have expected you to have good sources as a national TV house... This is absolutely absurd information that has been published through social networks as something Dalić had published, although, in the original text, it is written that he is not the author of this text.”

In short, no, the national team will not be donating their World Cup earnings to the children of Croatia.