Tuesday, 4 June 2019

Barcelona's New Kit for 2019/20 Season Draws Inspiration from Croatia

Remember a few months ago when we called out Liam Gallagher for liking Hajduk’s badge a bit too much in his Pretty Green spring collection? Well, this time, we have another case of imitation, but from some of the greatest football giants in the world - Barcelona and Croatia. 

Namely, the Spanish football champion launched their new 2019/20 kits for sale on Tuesday, which looks awfully similar to those of the 2018 World Cup finalists - the Croatia national team, reports Gol.hr on June 3, 2019. 

For the new shirts Messi & Co. will be wearing from July, Barcelona will stray away from its 120-year-history of the traditional blue and red stripes for the first time. And it might have something to do with the Croatia Football Federation and Barcelona boasting the same American sports equipment manufacturer as their sponsor - Nike.

The club claims that the new jersey design pattern was not inspired by Croatia, who won the silver medal at the World Cup in Russia a year ago and whose checks have been recognized since 1990 and the independence of the country.

"The new design is inspired by the city of Barcelona, or the characteristic blocks of the Eixample district, which is home to some of the most recognizable buildings designed by the great architect, Antoni Gaudi," said Barcelona in a press release on Monday.

Eixample is the center of Barcelona, built in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, consisting of a group of buildings merged into squares. The area also features the famous church Sagrada Familia.

Since its founding in 1899, Barcelona has donned stripes on its shirts and ended this season with this traditional design. 

"The Barcelona jersey for the 2019/2020 season will replace the traditional blue and red stripes for the first time in its history," the club said in Catalonia, confirming earlier speculation about this drastic change.

"This new home jersey will be released in public on June 4 (Tuesday) in all Barcelona stores and customary sales outlets around the world," the press release said.

Croatian football player Ivan Rakitić, who is contracted with Barcelona until the summer of 2021, should play in the new jerseys this summer. The front of the shirt will continue to feature the name of the Japanese sponsor in white.

Barcelona will travel to Japan with their new kits in July where they will play a tournament against Premier League club Chelsea and Japanese club Vissel Kobe, where former Barcelona players Andres Iniesta and David Villa play. 

To read more about lifestyle in Croatia, follow TCN’s dedicated page

Wednesday, 1 May 2019

Rakitić and Lovren Meet in First Leg of Champions League Semi-final Tonight

Barcelona hosts Liverpool in the first leg of the Champions League semi-final on Wednesday. It is the battle of the Croatians, as Ivan Rakitić and Dejan Lovren meet, reports Gol.hr on April 30, 2019. 

Unlike Tottenham and Ajax, who, contrary to all expectations, advanced to the Champions League semi-final, Barcelona and Liverpool, the more likely clubs in this stage of the competition, are two 'heavyweight clubs that have won 10 European titles overall. 

Interestingly, both Barcelona and Liverpool have five titles, and both clubs have been defeated three times in the final.

Barcelona’s last final was in 2015 when they won the Champions League title, while Liverpool lost to Real Madrid last summer and has been waiting to wear the European crown since 2005. 

Regardless of the semi-final outcome, Croatian football has yet another reason to be proud, as one Croatian will be in the Champions League final on June 1st at Wanda Metropolitano stadium in Madrid - Dejan Lovren or Ivan Rakitić.

After an injury, Lovren should finally be ready for the match tonight, but whether he will play in Liverpool’s starting lineup is questionable. Rakitić, one the other hand, is one of Barcelona's biggest hopes.

Barcelona already claimed the La Liga title on Saturday and can focus all of their attention to the Champions League, while Liverpool continues to run an exhausting battle on the two fronts, the Premier League and the Champions League. Two rounds before the end of the championship, Manchester City is one point ahead of Liverpool. The ‘Reds’, however, are hoping to clinch the Premier League title; one they have been waiting for since 1990.

"The fact that we are in the semifinal of the Champions League, and just before winning the Championship, makes us happy and hungry for new victories. You can always play better and get to these games in a better way, but we will play with a real desire to go to the final,” Rakitić said.

"I believe we have learned something from the previous seasons and we will now try to end this season perfectly,” he added.

"The most important thing now is to prepare well and play our game as usual. Our idea is not to score a single goal, but we cannot think of the return game now. We have to go for the victory but play calm. Liverpool can be dangerous, so we will have to be 100% concentrated,” Rakitić said.

And what will it be like playing against Lovren?

"I have great respect for him. All teams that are led by coach Jurgen Klopp have always been arranged well and he has drawn the best out of the players. I hope we stop them as soon as possible and then impose our own rhythm of the game. I also hope to score as soon as possible. The defense, however, is strong and they do not make it easy to score goals,” concluded Rakitić.

Barcelona and Liverpool will meet at 21:00 tonight.

To read more about sport in Croatia, follow TCN’s dedicated page

Tuesday, 23 April 2019

From Barcelona to Zagreb, Spanish Startup Employs 65 People

A successful Spanish startup which has spread to 105 cities in twenty countries in Europe, Africa, and Central and South America since 2015 has begin operations in no less than Zagreb.

As Marta Duic/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 23rd of April, 2019, Glovo, a fast delivery application (app) which allows customers to purchase, receive and send any products within the city within less than 45 minutes, has started its operations in the Croatian capital city of Zagreb.

"For now, Glovo has employed seven people in the ''core'' team in Zagreb, eighteen in customer support and fifty delivery people. Therefore, a total of 65 people are in employed in this operation, we're only just beginning, and we're also still actively employing people. The expectations are high because we think that there's a lot of room for first-class fast delivery on the Croatian market and the inclusion of a large number of partners in the on-demand economy trend. People are now accustomed to having everything at their fingertips, quickly and easily accessible, and that's what we provide - products from the entire city delivered within 30 to 60 minutes to the end user,'' stated general manager for Glovo Croatia, Teo Širola.

This Spanish startup started back in 2015 in Barcelona, Spain, and has since expanded to 105 cities, ranging from Paris and Milan and Istanbul and Nairobi, in twenty countries across Europe, Africa, Central and South America. More than fifteen million orders from partners such as McDonald's, KFC, Starbucks, and the like have been delivered around the globe via Spain's Glovo app. They have more than three million users, 10,000 partners and work with a network that involves more than 30,000 couriers.

"The first reactions we've had have been positive. We still need to educate the market in terms of the service we provide and explain that what we do is exclusively delivery. Specifically, we deliver straight from the restaurant (or store) to the customer, effectively delivering the service as if the buyer picked up the food (or the item) themselves. This is different from the services that have been provided on our market so far, where more orders are delivered at the same time, so, let's say, the tastes and smells have been mixed, and the food that eventually comes to the customer's door is cold,'' noted Širola. Aside from doing deliveries by car, Glovo uses bicycles and scooters to squeeze through heavy city traffic faster, and offer a more ecologically aware delivery option.

"Zagreb is accelerating the transformation in the domain of fast delivery in Croatia, and our vision is to bring the practicality of technology closer to everyone," says Širola.

Make sure to follow our dedicated business page for much more. If it's just Zagreb you're interested in, give Total Zagreb a follow. If you're planning a trip to the Croatian capital, find out everything you need to know in a page by clicking here.


Click here for the original article by Marta Duic for Poslovni Dnevnik

Saturday, 9 March 2019

Does Ivan Rakitić Have a Future at Barcelona?

Ahead of Barcelona’s game against Rayo Vallecano on Saturday, coach Ernesto Valverde talked about the possibility of Ivan Rakitić leaving Barcelona, which has circulated throughout international media in recent weeks.

Sunday, 3 March 2019

No Luck for Luka: Ivan Rakitić Key Player in Barcelona's El Clasico Win

March 3, 2019 - Luka Modrić and Ivan Rakitić met on Saturday evening in the always anticipated El Clasico between Real Madrid and Barcelona. 

This was the second time the two Spanish clubs met this week, as they played the second-leg of the Copa del Rey semi-final on Wednesday. 

Just as Barcelona was better on Wednesday, winning by three goals, they were better again on Saturday with another win in Madrid - and this time, thanks to Croatia’s Ivan Rakitić. 

In the 26th minute, the Croatian player, who was also one of the best players in the game, received a brilliant ball in the penalty area from Sergio Roberto, chipped the ball passed Madrid keeper Thibault Courtois and gave Barcelona the lead - and ultimately the win. This is Rakitić’s third goal this season in the Spanish championship.

Not even Ballon d’Or winner and Rakitić’s fellow countryman Luka Modrić could help Madrid, who played their sixth consecutive El Clasico without a win. Recall, Barcelona has won four and two games ended in a draw. The victory also has an important historical factor, as Barcelona, for the first time since 87 years, has taken over Real Madrid in the competition - Barcelona now has 96 wins, and Real 95.

“With all due respect to Real Madrid, we have made an important step towards winning the championship. Now we have to enjoy it together, let all the fans and admirers of Barcelona enjoy, and then we will turn to what is ahead of us,” said the 30-year-old Rakitić at the Santiago Bernabeu stadium in Madrid.

First-placed Barcelona is now 12 points ahead of the third-placed Madrid on the table. 

“When you win you have to be very happy. I'm proud of what we did. There are not many teams in the world that can say they won twice in three days,” the Croatian midfielder said on HRT

Rakitić scored 26 minutes in for the lead, his fifth goal in 39 appearances this season.

"We talked about what happened on Wednesday, and then we started the game well. We created opportunities and felt comfortable. They pressed in the second half, which was normal because they were looking to equalize, but we managed to end the game with some counter attacks. It's a perfect thing that we've won this game here,” Rakitić said.

Even Jose Mourinho, who played the part of a television commentator on Saturday, focused a lot of his attention on El Clasico. He especially hailed Ivan Rakitić.

"I have been saying this for a long time: for me, Rakitić is one of the most underappreciated players in the world. He’s fantastic in every aspect, works a lot in the defense and compensates for Messi's defensive performance. He is fantastic with the ball, chooses simple and efficient solutions,” he said, and finished sarcastically, reports Gol.hr.

“I wanted to say this because we are mostly talking about big names. Rakitić needs to improve his Instagram and social networks, which is very important today. He’s not so good at it, but he's good on the field,” he said.

To read more about sport in Croatia, follow TCN’s dedicated page

Tuesday, 29 January 2019

Big Clubs after Rakitić, but He Confirms Loyalty to Barcelona

According to media reports on Tuesday, Croatian footballer Ivan Rakitić could see a move to England.

Tuesday, 21 August 2018

Barcelona Responds to PSG's Expensive Offer for Rakitić with Improved Contract

Croatian footballer and vice-captain of the national team Ivan Rakitić has more than proved his worth at Barcelona. 

Thursday, 1 March 2018

Something to Tell the Grandkids About: Ivan Rakitić Celebrates 200 Games at Barcelona Tonight!

The Croatian footballer talks about his favorite moments from his 200-game career in the jersey of the Catalan greats, Barcelona. 

Thursday, 14 December 2017

Ivan Rakitić Takes Break from Barcelona to Enjoy Advent in Zagreb with Wife Raquel (Photos)

The famous Barcelona midfielder takes a break from Barcelona to revel in the best Advent in Europe. 

Tuesday, 26 September 2017

Ivan Rakitić: "I was very close to recent terrorist attack in Barcelona"

Croatian representative and FC Barcelona midfielder Ivan Rakitić reveals that he was minutes away from the 2017 Catalonia terror attack.

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