Monday, 19 October 2020

HNL Round 8 Recap: Shocking Hajduk Loss to Sibenik, Osijek-Lokomotiva Postponed

October 19, 2020 - The 8th round of the Croatian First League was held from October 16 to 18, 2020. This round featured a shocking Hajduk loss to Sibenik, while Osijek and Lokomotiva has been postponed due to coronavirus cases in the Zagreb club. 

Slaven Belupo v. Istra 1961 (5:1)

Belupo and Istra opened the 8th round on Friday, October 16, 2020, in Koprivnica in front of 308 spectators. 

Belupo's scoring spree started in the first half with two goals by Bozic in the 31st and 45+2 minutes for 2:0 at the half. 

Krstanovic (penalty) and Glavic increased Belupo's lead in the 50th and 61st minutes for 4:0. Boakye made it 5:0 in the 79th minute, though Istra's Vuk was able to come back to score one goal in the 85th minute for the final score of 5:1. 

Belupo is currently in 6th place with 7 points, while Istra is in the last place with 5. 

Dinamo v. Gorica (3:2)

Dinamo and Gorica met on Saturday, October 17, 2020, at Maksimir Stadium in front of 815 spectators. 

Gavranovic scored two goals for Dinamo in the 32nd and 36th minutes for 2:0 at the half. Gorica opened the second half with two goals to equalize - Mudrinski scored in the 46th and Hamad in the 50th for 2:2. 

Gavranovic secured a hattrick with a goal in the 66th minute for 3:2, which was the final score of the game. 

Dinamo is currently in first place with 19 points, while Gorica is in 2nd with 16. 

Rijeka v. Varazdin (2:1)

Rijeka and Varazdin met on Saturday, October 17, 2020, at Rujevica Stadium in front of 2,072 spectators. 

While Varazdin's Obregon was the first to score in the 17th minute for 0:1, an own goal by Stolnik made it 1:1 three minutes later. Kulenovic then increased Rijeka's lead to 2:1 at the half. 

With no goals in the second half, the game ended at 2:1 for Rijeka. 

Rijeka is currently in 4th place with 12 points, while Varazdin is in 8th place with 7. 

Hajduk v. Sibenik (0:1)

Hajduk and Sibenik met at Poljud Stadium on Sunday, October 18, 2020, in front of 4,517 spectators. 

Sahiti scored the only goal of the game in the 34th minute, which gave Sibenik the victory. 

Hajduk is currently in 5th place with 10 points, while Sibenik is in 7th with 7. 

Osijek v. Lokomotiva (POSTPONED)

Two players of NK Lokomotiva are positive for coronavirus, the Zagreb club announced on Sunday.

"Two NK Lokomotiva players were tested for COVID-19 on Sunday, October 18, and are positive. According to the Personal Data Protection Act (GDPR), we are not able to disclose the identity of the infected persons," the statement said on the club's website. The club also announced that "the competent epidemiological service was immediately notified, which imposed a measure of strict self-isolation on the two players, all following the recommendations of the Croatian Civil Protection Headquarters and the HNS working group."

Lokomotiva was supposed to play against Osijek Sunday at 5:05 pm, but the match was postponed.

"To avoid further possible spread of the infection to all other participants in the Osijek - Lokomotiva match, it is necessary to postpone it until the competent epidemiologist decides on further action and until additional testing of the entire team and determine the actual situation. According to the provisions of the Ordinance on football competitions and the Proposition of the competition, postponed matches must be played in the first possible free term, which will be decided later," said the commissioner of HT Prva Liga, Josip Brezni.

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Monday, 5 October 2020

HNL Round 7 Recap: Gorica Topped Hajduk, Osijek Moved into 3rd

October 5, 2020 - The 7th round of the Croatian First League was held from October 2 to 4, 2020. In this round, Gorica topped Hajduk, while Osijek's win against Sibenik pushed them into 3rd place.

Lokomotiva v. Istra 1961 (0:0)

Lokomotiva and Istra opened the 7th round in Zagreb on Friday, October 2, 2020. 

While the game went without goals, it did see four yellow cards for Lokomotiva. 

Lokomotiva is currently in 8th place with 5 points, while Istra is in 7th with 5 points. 

Sibenik v. Osijek (0:2)

Sibenik and Osijek played their 7th round match in Sibenik on Saturday, October 3, 2020, in front of 1,173 spectators. 

While the first half went without goals, Mierez scored for the Osijek lead in the 67th minute. A penalty awarded to Osijek less than 10 minutes later saw Mierez score again for the final score of 0:2.

Sibenik is currently in the last place with 4 points, while Osijek is in 3rd with 13. 

Gorica v. Hajduk (2:1)

Gorica and Hajduk met in Velika Gorica on Saturday, October 3, 2020, in front of 1,523 spectators. 

A penalty for Hajduk in the 45th minute saw Caktas score for 0:1 at the half. Lovric equalized for Gorica in the 62nd minute, after which Colina received a double-yellow for Hajduk, forcing them to play with a man down from the 70th minute. 

Hamad scored for the Gorica lead eight minutes later, while Jairo missed the chance to equalize from a penalty in the 10th minute of added time. The match ended at 2:1.

Gorica is currently in 2nd place with 16 points, while Hajduk is in 4th place with 10. 

Varazdin v. Dinamo (1:2)

Varazdin and Dinamo met on Sunday, October 4, 2020, at NK Varteks Stadium. 

Varazdin's Drozdek scored a penalty in the 8th minute to put the home team in the lead. However, Orsic scored just before the half to make it 1:1.

Another goal for Orsic in the 54th minute gave Dinamo the lead, and a goal taken back by VAR kept the score at 1:2.

Varazdin is currently in 6th place with 7 points, while Dinamo is in first with 16. 

Rijeka v. Slaven Belupo (2:0)

Rijeka and Slaven Belupo closed out the 7th round on Sunday, October 4, 2020, at Rujevica Stadium.

While the first half went without goals, Andrijasevic scored in the 69th minute for 1:0 Rijeka. Kulenovic scored a penalty in the second minute of added time for the final result of 2:0.

Rijeka is currently in 5th place with 9 points, while Belupo is in 9th place with 4. 

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Monday, 28 September 2020

HNL Round 6 Recap: Hajduk Topped Varazdin at Stormy Poljud

September 28, 2020 - The 6th round of the Croatian First League was held on September 26 and 27, 2020. In this round, Hajduk topped Varazdin at a very stormy Poljud, while Osijek was better than Gorica. The games between Dinamo and Rijeka, and Lokomotiva and Slaven Belupo were postponed due to obligations in the Europa League.

Istra 1961 v. Sibenik (1:0)

Istra and Sibenik opened the 6th round on Saturday, September 26, 2020, in Pula. 

The only goal of the match came in the 39th minute when Ivancic scored for 1:0 at the half. Grzan missed a penalty in the 70th minute and failed to increase Istra's lead. The game ended 1:0.

Istra is currently in 9th place with 4 points, while Sibenik is in 8th with 4 points. 

Osijek v. Gorica (2:1)

Osijek and Gorica met on Saturday, September 26, 2020, at City Garden Stadium. 

Mierez scored a penalty for Osijek in the 3rd minute of the ref's added time, just before the half. A Doka double-yellow saw Gorica play with a man down from the 72nd minute. Gorica, however, was able to equalize in the 84th minute thanks to a Lovric goal. Grgic put Osijek back in the lead in the 7th minute of added time for a final score of 2:1.

Osijek is currently in 4th place with 10 points, while Gorica is in 2nd place with 13 points. 

Hajduk v. Varazdin (2:0)

Hajduk and Varazdin closed out the 6th round on Sunday, September 27, 2020, at Poljud Stadium. 

Gyursco scored an early goal for Hajduk in the 5th minute to put them ahead 1:0. A Pellumbi red card for Varazdin in the 15th minute did not help them equal the score. 

A penalty was awarded to Hajduk in the 50th minute, which Caktas scored for 2:0. A vicious storm erupted in the game's final minutes, which you can see in the video below. 

Hajduk is currently in 3rd place with 10 points, while Varazdin is in 5th with 7. 

Dinamo and Rijeka, and Lokomotiva and Slaven Belupo, will play their 6th round matches in the first free term.

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Friday, 25 September 2020

Europa League 3rd Round Qualifiers: Rijeka Topped Kolos in Extra Time, Lokomotiva and Hajduk Out

September 25, 2020 - In Europa League's 3rd round qualifiers, Rijeka topped Kolos in extra time to move onto the playoffs, while Lokomotiva and Hajduk have been eliminated. 

Lokomotiva opened the 3rd round qualifiers for Croatian clubs on Thursday and experienced a heavy defeat to Swedish club Malmo, who overcame the Zagreb club 5:0.

Lokomotiva conceded the first goal in the 5th minute when Thelin scored for 1:0. Thelin scored again 10 minutes later for 2:0. Nalic made it 3:0 in the 32nd minute. The second half opened with Larsson's goal in the 52nd minute for 4:0, and Rieks confirmed Malmo's victory with a goal in the 72nd minute for the final score of 5:0.

If it's any consolation, this is not Lokomotiva's biggest defeat in Europe. In the 2015/2016 season, they lost 6:0 to PAOK.

In Hajduk's 3rd round qualifying match, they met Turkish club Galatasaray in Istanbul. The Split club admirably managed to hold their own until the last 15 minutes of the match when a questionable sub by coach Hari Vukas cost them the game. 

Galatasaray's Belhanda scored in the 77th for 1:0, and Babel in the 86th minute for the final score of 2:0. 

Hajduk otherwise played an equal duel against the Turkish giant but failed to capitalize on many opportunities. This cost them, and Galatasaray wisely took advantage of their exhaustion towards the end of the match. 

After Lokomotiva and Hajduk were defeated, the third Croatian representative Rijeka still advanced to the playoff round of the Europa League qualifiers. Rijeka struggled against Kolos Kovalivka, a Ukrainian club that is playing in European competitions for the first time this year. Still, after 0:0 in 90 minutes, they finally beat the guests 2:0 with two extra-time goals at Rujevica.

Escoval's goal in the 103rd minute and Adrijasevic's in the 115th for 2:0 advanced Rijeka to the playoff round, where Copenhagen awaits. To secure autumn in Europe and at least 2.6 million euro, Rijeka must beat the very strong Copenhagen side in the only away match on Thursday.

The Danish club, which is 36th on the UEFA coefficient table, is better placed than, for example, Lazio, Monaco, or PSV. Copenhagen is the most prestigious club not only in Denmark but also in Scandinavia, which is playing in Europe. Copenhagen has not played in a Champions League or Europa League group only once in the last 14 years, and behind them is the second-best European season in history.

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Friday, 18 September 2020

Europa League Qualifiers: Hajduk Moves to 3rd Round, Basel Eliminates Osijek

September 18, 2020 - After the Europea League qualifiers on Thursday, Hajduk moves to the 3rd round, and Basel eliminates Osijek. 

Hajduk is in the third qualifying round of the Europa League after defeating Macedonian club Reneova in Skopje on Thursday. A goal by Mijo Caktas in the 4th minute was enough to give Hajduk the win and advance them to the next round.

Hajduk missed a number of great chances in the first half, and fortunately, just one goal was enough to pass.

In the second half, Renova was much better and more dangerous. Hajduk lost their momentum, panicked, and found themselves playing defense against a much more modest host.

In the third qualifying round, Hajduk will play against Turkish club Galatasaray, who defeated Neftchi on Thursday. 

Osijek, on the other hand, has completed their European journey for the third season in a row with a defeat in the 2nd qualifying round of the Europa League.

Two years ago, they lost to the Rangers, and last year, to CSKA Sofia. However, their victory against Rijeka in coach Nenad Bjelica's debut on the bench last week gave Osijek the optimism to break their Europa League curse. Unfortunately, Osijek did not succeed this time either, losing to Basel 1:2 at City Garden Stadium.

Thus, Osijek's first European match this season, unfortunately, was their last.

The famous Swiss club, who reached the quarterfinals of the Europa League last season, celebrated in Osijek, although the second half could have gone either way. While Basel was up 2:0 at half time, Osijek played much tighter in the second half, but only managed to reduce the score by one goal. 

The scorers for Basel were Arthur Cabral (18) and Valentin Stocker (44), while Ante Majstorovic (84) scored for Osijek.

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Monday, 14 September 2020

HNL Round 4 Recap: Dinamo Tops Hajduk in Eternal Derby at Poljud

September 14, 2020 - The 4th round of HNL was played from September 11 to 13, 2020. This round featured the Eternal Derby at Poljud, where Dinamo was better than Hajduk, while Osijek crushed Rijeka 3:0. 

Slaven Belupo v. Sibenik (0:0)

Slaven Belupo and Sibenik opened the 4th round in Koprivnica on Friday, September 11, 2020. 

Krstanovic missed a penalty just before the half, and the game went without goals.

Belupo is currently in 8th place with 3 points, while Sibenik is in 9th with one point. 

Osijek v. Rijeka (3:0)

Osijek and Rijeka met on Saturday, September 12, 2020, for their 4th round match at City Garden Stadium. 

An early goal by Jugovic had Osijek in the lead in the 5th minute. Rijeka's Arsenic saw a red card in the 37th minute, which drastically changed the game. Osijek scored their second goal one minute later for 2:0 at the half.

Osijek secured their victory with a goal by Mierez in the 75th minute, which was the final score of the game. 

Osijek is currently in 6th place with 4 points, while Rijeka is in 5th with 4 points. 

Hajduk v. Dinamo (1:2)

Hajduk and Dinamo met for the season's first Eternal Derby at Poljud on Saturday, September 12, 2020. 

Kastrati gave Dinamo the lead just three minutes before the half for 0:1. Five minutes into the second half, Orsic scored a stunner for 0:2 

Hajduk's Juric was able to get a header in the back of the net in the 88th minute for 1:2, which was the final score of the game. 

Hajduk is currently in 3rd place with 7 points, while Dinamo is in first place with 12.

Istra 1961 v. Varazdin (0:1)

Istra and Varazdin met in Pula at the Aldo Drosini Stadium on Sunday, September 13, 2020. 

The game's only goal was scored by Senic in the 37th minute, which gave Varazdin the 0:1 victory. 

Istra is currently in the last place with 0 points, while Varazdin is in 4th with 7 points. 

Lokomotiva v. Gorica (1:2)

Lokomotiva and Gorica closed out the 4th round in Zagreb on Sunday, September 13, 2020. 

Lovric scored for Gorica in the 32nd minute for 0:1 at the half. Lovric increased Gorica's lead in the 85th minute to 0:2, though Karacic was able to get one in for Lokomotiva for a final result of 1:2. 

Lokomotiva is currently in 7th place with 4 points, while Gorica is in 2nd place with 12 points. 

All games were played without the presence of spectators. You can see the full HNL table here

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Sunday, 6 September 2020

Poljud Celebrates 41 Years, 100 Million Kuna Renovation Project in Works

September 6, 2020 - Poljud celebrates 41 years. Retired professor Ante Mihanovic from the Faculty of Civil Engineering, Architecture and Geodesy in Split spoke about the condition of the stadium after so many years, how it could look in a new guise, and how long the renovation works could last.

Slobodna Dalmacija writes Poljud stadium, the work of architect Boris Magas, is celebrating its 41st birthday. 

Even as a young engineer and associate of the chief constructor, engineer Bozenko Jelic, Mihanovic participated in the design of the stadium until the main project stage. Then, after construction, he led the monitoring of that demanding construction for more than two decades. A few years ago, also as part of the team of the Faculty in Split, he was one of the reviewers of the stadium renovation project developed by the IGH Institute.

To begin with, he spoke about the reasons why the Faculty carefully monitored the construction of Poljud for more than 20 years:

"A year after its construction, vibrations were noticed in high parts of the auditorium. We found that these are millimeter shifts on the large console, which are insignificant. But they created an uncomfortable feeling, because people are used to vertical vibrations, and not really to horizontal ones.

Also, it was the first time that the company "Mero" had produced a structure that is curved over 200 meters.

"That construction was something new in Europe. As an architectural work, it was met with a lot of praise in the world and it is the only building structure from the former Yugoslavia that has entered the literature of universities in Western Europe. The only!" points out the interlocutor, who is an associate member of the Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts, a regular member of the Croatian Academy of Technical Sciences, was the dean and vice dean of the Faculty of Split for 12 years and is still active at the age of 71.

Mihanovic continues that there was a 10-year warranty period for the quality of performance.

"Initially, we removed the cracks on the main supports that were expected and the contractor agreed to repair them. So, the stadium was monitored, but not maintained," he notes.

"There are norms in the profession that the City, as the owner of the sports facility, did not respect. Namely, the stadium was supposed to be maintained after the age of 10, considering the steel construction, which means that it is protected against corrosion, dust is removed from it, and to see how the installations, screws and everything else work. Upstairs you also have KIC cabins and trails. Steel structures are generally inspected in detail every five years, and I would say that renovation should be done every 10 years. This has not been done so far."

A few years ago, an initiative was launched from the City to start the renovation, which would replace everything that has not been done for these 40 years.

"It has been warned countless times that a renovation is needed, because the more difficult it is, the more expensive the intervention will be. It has now reached the amount of 100 million kuna, which is a considerable amount. The recent decision to declare the stadium a cultural monument, because it is - a top architectural and construction work, allows you to apply for European funds for rehabilitation."

The IGH Institute won the tender for the preparation of the rehabilitation project, and professors Bernardin Peros and Ante Mihanovic from the Faculty of Split were reviewers.

"We reviewed the entire project on which about 30 experts from the Institute and their associates worked. It has been accepted and is located in the City and in Hajduk, and is on its way to being applied for EU funds. With the realization of this complete project, the stadium will be brought to a state that would be very close to the state after construction."

With one hundred million kuna...

"We will change the lexan cover and metal substructures, use anticorrosive to protect all metal roof structures and remove defects, restore and finally repaint all concrete structures, which will be refreshed in appearance. Then there are interventions on electrical and mechanical installations, and on the fire protection system. The stated estimated amount does not include the interior design of landscaping and lawns."

At one time, the installation of solar panels was mentioned as an idea.

"Solar panels are out of the question because this would change the shape of the roof, and it should be in the same shape as the original. The Belgian factory, which produces lexan boards, has informed those working on the renovation project that they have preserved the molds and are likely to make more favorable offers to make new boards. To this factory, as well as to the company "Mero" from Germany, Poljud stadium was a reference for future business, and they follow everything that happens around," said Mihanovic, who adds:

"The steel substructure is in the worst condition, to which the cover is attached with screws. Due to the substructure, the entire cover must be removed.

It seems that in the construction itself, the substructure was perfectly solved. However, there was a hurry with the construction, the stadium was built in less than two years, so it was not possible to wait for someone else to deliver it.

Also, the structures were partially damaged in the shooting during the war, as JNA soldiers from Lore practiced shooting in some parts of the stadium. There is also damage by the nature of things - zinc and anti-corrosion protection is not preserved everywhere and will have to be partially restored and of course, there will be painting."

Of that 100 million kuna, 40 million kuna are for metal parts - the roof and everything next to it, and 60 million for the concrete structure.

"You have damage and patches on the concrete structure. All damage should be removed, compensated for where the reinforcement is missing, restored and repainted. So all the spectator supporter beams will be renewed. Then you have bridges, tunnels, retaining walls - they all need to be inspected and rebuilt. The bridge on the promenade above Hajduk's premises is in the worst condition because the drainage was not good there and water was retained on it."

The renovation project is complete, says Mihanovic, and, in his opinion, very well made.

The city of Split must act within a certain deadline.

"In my opinion, the renovation should be carried out within 10 years, because after that there will be low reliability of the elements that are overhead, and there will be a risk of someone getting hurt. Also, the longer you wait, the more you will have to invest in renovation. So the sooner you start, the cheaper it will be."

The rehabilitation, he adds, will take several years.

"Objectively, you will not have a hundred teams to attack at once. For example, if you started painting 12,000 rods of steel construction with a group of a dozen people, you would do so for so long that when they get to the other end, you would have to start all over again, provided you renew the paint every five years."

He continues that the stadium will not need to be closed for renovation works.

"Removing the cover and substructure can be done in the period when no matches are held at the stadium. When the renovation of the stands is done, work will be done on one part, and the other part will be used. Therefore, playing matches and partially filling the audience will always be allowed."

Mihanovic says that the stadium is still secure as it stands now.

"But it is simply a thing that ages, weakens day by day, and one day it must be repaired. You can leave it like that for another 20 years, but then it's not certain that some of those lexans won't fly from above."

The documentation is prepared to apply for European funds. 

"The application for funds will last at least from a year to a year and a half, followed by a public procurement for the selection of contractors. So, the renovation could start in two years at the earliest. The Poljud beauty will return to its original state, perhaps even better. The value of the stadium is 150 million euro. That is how much it would cost to make a new one. The renovation will cost only 10 percent of that amount. According to that, the building is in relatively good condition.

The designers were obliged to give it a shelf life of 50 years. It is without intervention in the structural parts, but with earlier maintenance. You can't let the construction go, you have to start maintaining it at some point."

The immediate work is numerical modeling, calculations and design of building structures.

"We worked on the calculation and design of the Poljud structure, partly on our own program, and something on the American STRESS, which was installed on "Srca" - University Computing Center in Zagreb," said Mihanovic.

So, what does Hajduk say?

"Project documentation has been prepared, and the City and Hajduk will apply for funding from EU funds from 2021 to 2027. We’re sending out funding applications in September, and we’ll know the results early next year, and maybe sooner. The roof renovation project is worth 102 million kuna, and the museum 44 million," said Marin Brbic, president of Hajduk.

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Tuesday, 1 September 2020

Europa League 3rd Qualifying Round Draw: Rijeka and Lokomotiva Learn Opponents

September 1, 2020 - Rijeka and Lokomotiva have learned their opponents for the Europa League Round 3 qualifying draw.

On Monday, Hajduk and Osijek found out their opponents in Europa League's second qualifying round. Hajduk will play against the Macedonian club Renova away, and Osijek will play against Basel.

The draw for the third qualifying round was held today, and Rijeka and Lokomotiva joined Hajduk and Osijek in learning their opponents. In this phase of the competition, only one match will be played without spectators, and two matches will be played in the playoffs.

Lokomotiva away, Greek Aris or Ukrainian Kolos arrives in Rijeka

The first to be drawn was Lokomotiva, which moved to the Europa League after losing to the Vienna club Rapid in the Champions League. Lokomotiva will thus host the winner between Hungarian club Honved and Swedish club Malmo.

Rijeka did well in today's draw and will welcome Greek Aris or Ukrainian Kolos Kovalivka.

If Hajduk passes Macedonian club Renova, they will play against Azerbaijani club Neftchi or Turkish club Galatasaray. If Osijek throws out Basel, they will welcome Cypriot club Anorthosis at City Garden.

Hajduk - Renova and Osijek - Basel will be played on September 17, and the matches of the third qualifying round are on the program a week later.

Europa League Round 3 Qualifying Draw:

Rijeka (starts in the third qualifying round) - Aris (Greece) or Kolos Kovalivka (Ukraine)

Lokomotiva (joins in the third qualifying round after relegation from the Champions League qualifiers) - Honved (Hungary) or Malmö (Sweden)

Hajduk (if they knock out Renova) - Neftchi Baku (Azerbaijan) or Galatasaray (Turkey)

Osijek (if they knock out Basel) - Anorthosis (Cyprus)

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Monday, 31 August 2020

Europa League 2nd Qualifying Round Draw: Hajduk v Renova, Osijek v Basel

August 31, 2020 - Hajduk and Osijek, the two Croatian representatives that will compete in the second qualifying round of the Europa League, have found out their rivals. Hajduk v Renova and Osijek v Basel.

Only one game is played at this stage of the competition. Hajduk will play against the Macedonian club Renova away, while Osijek plays against Basel at their stadium. The matches will be played on September 17, 2020. 

Renova finished last season in fourth place behind Vardar, Sileks, and Shkendija. The Macedonian club beat the Armenian club Alashkert 1-0 in the first round. This is their return to Europe after five years. They have played six times in Europe, and their biggest success was the elimination of Rijeka in the Intertoto Cup in 2008. They were the champions of Macedonia in 2010.

Next to Tottenham, Basel is the club with the highest odds in the Europa League qualifiers. They were stopped by Shakhtar in the quarterfinals last season. Basel was the Swiss champion last in 2017. They passed the group stage of the Champions League three times in the last ten years, and in 2013, played in the semifinals of the Europa League. The most valuable player of the club is the Brazilian striker Arthur. His value is estimated at six million euro. He scored 18 goals and, along with Fabian Frei, was the club's top scorer. Arthur tested positive for the coronavirus, so his performance against Osijek is still in question.

Tomorrow, the draw of the third qualifying round will be held, and Rijeka and Lokomotiva will join Hajduk (not-seeded) and Osijek (seeded due to the Basel coefficient). Rijeka will be a top-seed, and Lokomotiva will not. The third qualifying round matches are scheduled for September 24, 2020. 

Furthermore, Dinamo is the only Croatian representative in the Champions League qualifiers. The Croatian champion has drawn Hungarian Ferencvaros in the third qualifying round. 

Only one match is played in Budapest on September 15 or 16. In the second qualifying round, Dinamo played away and eliminated Romanian club Cluj on penalities. 

Source: Index.hr

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Monday, 31 August 2020

HNL Round 3 Recap: Dinamo Tops Osijek, Hajduk and Belupo Draw

August 31, 2020 - The 3rd round of the Croatian First League was held from August 28 to 30, 2020. This round saw Dinamo top Osijek 4:1, and Hajduk and Belupo draw at Poljud. The 3rd round was played without the presence of spectators. 

Gorica v. Sibenik (3:2)

Gorica and Sibenik opened the third round of the Croatian First League on August 28, 2020, in Velika Gorica. 

Mudrinski opened the scoring for Gorica with a goal in the third minute for 1:0. Bulat had the chance to equalize in the 45th minute though he missed a penalty. 

Lovric increased Gorica's lead to 2:0 in the 65th minute, and Babec made it 3:0 in the 75th. Rak scored in the 87th minute for 3:1, and Anocic in the third minute of added time for the final score of 3:2. 

Gorica is currently in 2nd place with 9 points, while Sibenik is in 9th place with 0. 

Rijeka v. Istra 1961 (2:1)

Rijeka and Gorica met on August 29, 2020, at Rujevica Stadium in Rijeka. 

Andrijasevic scored the first goal of the game in the 13th minute for the 1:0 at the half. Andrijasevic scored again in the 69th minute for 2:0, though Guzina got one for Istra in the 70th for the final score of 2:1. 

Rijeka is currently in 4th place with 6 points, while Istra is in the last place with 0 points. 

Hajduk v. Slaven Belupo (2:2)

Hajduk and Belupo met on Saturday, August 29, 2020, at Poljud Stadium in Split.

Krstanovic scored a Belupo penalty in the 38th minute for 0:1 at the half. Diamantakos scored in his Hajduk debut for 1:1 in the 52nd minute. 

Gyursco put Hajduk in the 2:1 lead in the 65th minute, though Bacelic-Grgic equalized for 2:2 six minutes later. Jairo received a double-yellow in the 85th minute, forcing Hajduk to play with a man down for the remainder of the match. 

Hajduk is currently in 3rd place with 8 points, while Belupo is in 7th with 2 points. 

Varazdin v. Lokomotiva (1:1)

Varazdin and Lokomotiva met on Sunday, August 30, 2020, at NK Varteks Stadium. 

Mehdikhani scored just before the half for 1:0 Varazdin. However, an own goal by Rodin made it 1:1 in the 49th minute, which was the final score of the game. 

Varazdin is currently in 5th place with 4 points, while Lokomotiva is in 6th with 4. 

Dinamo v. Osijek (4:1)

Dinamo and Osijek closed out the 3rd round at Maksimir Stadium on Sunday, August 31, 2020.

Gavranovic opened the scoring spree for Dinamo with a goal in the 5th minute for 1:0. Majstorovic missed a penalty for Osijek right before the half. 

Grezda equalized in the 48th minute for 1:1, though Ademi put Dinamo back in the lead with a goal in the 71st minute. Two penalties secured Dinamo's victory - one by Andric in the 81st and Tolic in the 86th. 

Dinamo is currently in 1st place with 9 points, while Osijek is in 8th with 1.

You can see the full HNL table here

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