Monday, 28 October 2019

HNL Round 13 Recap: Dinamo Tops Osijek, Rijeka Falls to Gorica, Bizarre Hajduk Goal

October 28, 2019 - The 13th round of the Croatian First League was held from October 25 to 27, 2019. This round featured the derby between Dinamo and Osijek and another Rijeka loss to Gorica. However, perhaps most exciting was watching Hajduk score a bizarre goal against Slaven Belupo, which even caught the attention of international media. 

Varazdin v. Inter Zapresic (0:1)

Varazdin and Inter opened the 13th round on Friday, October 25, 2019, at NK Varteks Stadium in front of 1,473 fans. 

A penalty awarded to Inter in the 31st minute, which decided the fate of the game after Serderov scored for 0:1. A double yellow for Varazdin’s Lisakovich in the 46th minute didn’t help the home team’s chances of equalizing, and the game ended 0:1. 

 

Varazdin is currently in 9th place with 10 points, while Inter is in 7th with 11. 

Hajduk v. Slaven Belupo (2:0)

Hajduk and Belupo met at Poljud on Saturday, October 26, 2019, in front of 9,045 spectators. 

Hajduk’s first goal came in the 14th minute thanks to Jairo for 1:0 at the half. However, the second goal royally embarrassed Belupo. After Belupo celebrated a goal that never was (because the ball hit the post), Hajduk capitalized on the counter-attack, and Juranovic found himself one-on-one with an empty net… because the Belupo keeper was still on the sideline celebrating. You can watch the fiasco in the video below. 

Hajduk is currently in 2nd place with 27 points, while Belupo is in the last with 10. 

Rijeka v. Gorica (1:2)

Rijeka and Gorica met at Rujevica Stadium on Saturday, October 26, 2019, in front of 4,117 spectators. 

While the first half went without goals, it was Gorica’s Zwolinski to score for 0:1, though Tomecak equalized for 1:1 in the 82nd minute. Gorica took advantage of a Rijeka red card in the 90th minute, and Dvornekovic increased Gorica’s lead to 1:2, which was the final score of the game. 

 

Rijeka is currently in 3rd place with 22 points, while Gorica is in 6th with 18. 

Istra 1961 v. Lokomotiva (0:2)

Istra and Lokomotiva met in Pula on Sunday, October 27, 2019. 

While the first half went without goals, Tolic scored for the Lokomotiva lead in the 85th minute, and Tuci increased their lead in the second minute of injury time for 0:2. 

Istra is currently in 8th place with 10 points, while Lokomotiva is in 5th place with 19.

Dinamo v. Osijek (1:0)

Dinamo and Osijek closed out the 13th round on Sunday, October 28, 2019, at Maksimir stadium in Zagreb. 

The only goal of the game came in the 42nd minute when Kadzior scored for 1:0. 

 

Dinamo is currently in 1st place with 28 points, while Osijek is in 4th with 20. 

You can see the HNL table here

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

Monday, 21 October 2019

HNL Round 12 Recap: Dinamo Back in First after Hajduk and Lokomotiva Draw

October 21, 2019 - The 12th round of the Croatian First League was held from October 18 to 20, 2019. In this round, Dinamo retook first place after Hajduk and Lokomotiva drew. 

Gorica v. Dinamo (2:4)

Gorica and Dinamo opened the 12th round in Velika Gorica on Friday, October 18,2019. 

Orsic and Kadzior scored for Dinamo in the 25th and 27th minutes to make it 0:2 at the half - and thanks to another goal by Orsic, it was 0:3 by the 49th minute.  Lovric came back with a goal for Gorica in the 55th, though an Orsic hat trick made it 1:4 in the 61st. Gorica’s Suk scored in the 77th for the final score of 2:4. 

Gorica is currently in 6th place with 15 points, while Dinamo is back in first with 25. 

Varazdin v. Istra 1961 (1:0)

Varazdin and Istria met on Saturday, October 19, 2019, at the NK Varteks stadium. 

The first half went without goals, and the game didn’t see its only goal until the 87th minute when Benko scored for Varazdin for 1:0. 

 

Varazdin is currently in 8th place with 10 points, while Istra is in 7th with 10. 

Slaven Belupo v. Rijeka (1:2)

Belupo and Rijeka met in Koprivnica on Saturday, October 19, 2019. 

Belupo’s Radivojevic put the home team in the lead in the 14th minute for 1:0 at the half. It wasn't until the end of the match that Rijeka came back - Gorgon scored in the 74th minute to equalize, and Acosty scored in the 90th for the 1:2 win. 

Belupo is currently in 9th place with 10 points, while Rijeka is in third with 22. 

Inter Zapresic v. Osijek (3:3)

Inter and Osijek met on Sunday, October 20, 2019, at Stadion ŠRC Zaprešić in front of 662 fans. 

Maric put Osijek in the lead for 0:1, though two goals by Serderov in the 32nd and 43rd minute had Inter up 2:1 at the half. Serderov scored his hat trick in the 63rd minute for 3:1, though Lepa and Spoljaric came back to equalize for Osijek in the 72nd and 92nd minute for the 3:3 draw. 

 

Inter is currently in the last place with 8 points, while Osijek is in 4th with 20. 

Lokomotiva v. Hajduk (0:0)

Lokomotiva and Hajduk closed out the 12th round on Sunday, October 20, 2019, at Kranjceviceva Street Stadium. 

While there were chances on both ends, neither team was able to score. The draw was met with criticism by part of Hajduk fan group Torcida, who called for coach Damir Buric's departure. 

Lokomotiva is currently in 5th place with 16 points, while Hajduk has dropped to 2nd with 24.

You can see the full HNL table here

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

Monday, 7 October 2019

HNL Round 11 Recap: Hajduk, Dinamo, Osijek Secure Wins, Rijeka and Lokomotiva Draw

October 7, 2019 - The 11th round of the Croatian First League was held from October 4 to 6, 2019. Hajduk remains in first after the 11th round, with Dinamo just one point behind in second and Osijek and Rijeka 4 points behind in third and fourth place. 

Istria 1961 v. Inter Zapresic (2:2)

Istria and Inter opened the 11th round on Friday, October 4, 2019, in Pula in front of 1,555 spectators. 

Inter’s Grgic was the first to score for 0:1 at the half, though most of the excitement was saved for the second half. 

Ivancic scored two goals for Istria, in the 47th and 56th minutes for 2:1, though Frelih equalized for Inter in the 4th minute of added time for 2:2. 

Istria is currently in 7th place with 10 points, while Inter is in 9th with 7. 

Hajduk v. Varazdin (2:0)

Hajduk and Varazdin met on Saturday, October 5, 2019, at Poljud stadium in Split in front of 7,945 spectators. 

Hajduk’s Jairo scored in the 21st minute for 1:0 at the half, though Nejasmic increased their lead to 2:0 in the 65th minute, which was the final score of the game. Varazdin’s Senic received his second yellow in the 90th minute, forcing Varazdin to play with a man down for the final minutes of the game. 

Hajduk is currently in first place with 23 points, while Varazdin is in the last place with 7. 

Dinamo v. Slaven Belupo (1:0)

Dinamo and Belupo met on Saturday, October 5, 2019, at Maksimir stadium in front of 1,511 sectors. 

The only goal of the match came in the 5th minute when Petkovic scored a penalty for 1:0. Neither team was able to score for the remainder of the match. 

Dinamo is currently in second place with 22 points, while Belupo is in 8th with 10. 

Osijek v. Gorica (2:1)

Osijek and Gorica met on Saturday, October 5, 2019, at City Garden Stadium in front of 2,212 sectors. 

While the first half went without goals, Lovric put Gorica in the lead with a goal in the 54th minute. Osijek’s Maric scored a penalty in the 66th minute for 1:1, and Mance increased Osijek’s lead to 2:1 in the 75th minute. 

Osijek is currently in 3rd place with 19 points, while Gorica is in 5th place with 15. 

Rijeka v. Lokomotiva (1:1)

Rijeka and Lokomotiva closed out the 11th round at Rujevica Stadium on October 6, 2019, in front of 4,835 spectators. 

Andrijasevic put Rijeka in the lead with a goal just before the ref blew the whistle for the half, though Uzuni equalized for Lokomotiva minutes later in the 49th minute for 1:1, which was the final score of the game. 

 

Rijeka is currently in 4th place with 19 points, while Lokomotiva is in 6th place with 15. 

You can see the HNL table here

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

Monday, 30 September 2019

HNL Round 9 Recap: Hajduk and Istria Draw, Dinamo Only One Point Behind in 2nd

September 27, 2019 - The 9th round of the Croatian First League was held from September 27 to 29, 2019. This round saw big wins for Dinamo, Osijek, and Rijeka. Dinamo is now only one point behind Hajduk, who sits at the top of the table.

Lokomotiva v. Dinamo (0:4)

Lokomotiva and Dinamo opened the 9th round at Kranjčevićeva Street Stadium in Zagreb on Friday, September 27, 2019, in front of 2,983 fans. 

Kadzior opened the scoring spree for Dinamo with a goal in the 10th minute for 0:1, which was the score at the half. 

Olmo and Orsic scored in the 58th and 59th minute for 0:3, while Gavranovic secured Dinamo’s victory with a goal in the 74th for 0:4. 

 

Lokomotiva is currently in 6th place with 14 points, while Dinamo is in 2nd with 19. 

Varazdin v. Rijeka (0:2)

Varazdin and Rijeka met on Saturday, September 28, 2019, at NK Varteks stadium in front of 1,946 fans. 

Rijeka scored both goals in the first half - Pereira in the 12th minute and Halilovic in the 36th minute. Varazdin’s Djurasek was shown his second yellow in the 69th minute, forcing Varazdin to play with ten men for the rest of the match. 

 

Varazdin is currently in 9th place with 7 points, while Rijeka is in 3rd with 18. 

Slaven Belupo v. Osijek (0:4)

Belupo and Osijek met on Saturday, September 28, 2019, in Koprivnica in front of 703 fans. 

Mance (’25), Maric (’35), and Lepa (’41) scored for Osijek in the first half for 0:3. Skoric secured Osijek’s shutout with a goal in the 71st for 0:4. 

 

Belupo is currently in 7th place with 10 points, while Osijek is in 4th with 16. 

Inter Zapresic v. Gorica (0:2)

Inter and Gorica met on Sunday, September 29, 2019, at ŠRC Zaprešić Stadium in front of 553 fans. 

Cabraja scored in the 31st minute for 0:1 at the half.  Zwolinski increased Gorica’s lead in the 57th minute for 0:2, which was the final score of the game. Gorica also played a man down from the 53rd minute after Marina was shown his second yellow. 

Inter is currently in the last place with 6 points, while Gorica is in 5th place with 15. 

Istria v. Hajduk (1:1)

Istria and Hajduk closed out the 9th round on Sunday, September 29, 2019, in Pula in front of 4,569 fans.

Hajduk’s Caktas scored in the 35th minute for 0:1 at the half. Loncar equalized for Istria in the 80th minute for 1:1, which was the final score of the game. 

Istria is currently in 8th place with 9 points, while Hajduk remains in first place with 20. 

You can see the full HNL table here

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

Monday, 23 September 2019

HNL Round 9 Recap: Varazdin Defeats Dinamo, Hajduk Stays in First Place

September 23, 2019 - The 9th round of the Croatian First League was held from September 20 to 22, 2019. The 9th round brought a big upset to Dinamo, saw the coaches of Rijeka and Osijek leave their posts, and Hajduk now sits clear in first place by 3 points. 

Lokomotiva v. Osijek (2:1)

Lokomotiva and Osijek opened the 9th round on Friday, September 20, 2019, at Kranjčevićeva Street Stadium. 

While Osijek’s Maric scored in the 7th minute for 0:1, Halilovic equalized for Lokomotiva in the 37th minute for 1:1 at the half. 

Tolic increased Lokomotiva’s lead for 2:1 in the 88th minute, giving Lokomotiva the win in the end. 

Lokomotiva is currently in 4th place with 14 points, while Osijek is in 5th with 13. 

Slaven Belupo v. Gorica (2:0)

Belupo and Gorica met in Koprivnica on Saturday, September 21, 2019. 

Steenvoorden put Belupo in the lead with an own goal in the 29th minute for 1:0 at the half. After Cabraja was shown a red card in the 85th minute, Belupo’s Krstanovic scored a penalty to increase the lead to 2:0, which was how the game ended. Gorica ended the game with nine men after Lovric was shown a second yellow in the 91st. 

 

Belupo is currently in 7th place with 10 points, while Gorica is in 6th with 10. 

Varazdin v. Dinamo Zagreb (1:0)

Varazdin and Dinamo met in Varazdin on Saturday, September 21, 2019. 

After a shocking 4:0 win against Atalanta to open their Champions League season, Dinamo suffered a defeat in the Croatian League to a team that was promoted from the second division this season. 

While the first half went without goals, Guera scored for Varazdin in the 62nd minute, which was the final score of the game. 

 

Varazdin has moved from the last place to 9th place with 7 points,  while Dinamo is in second with 16. 

Hajduk v. Inter Zapresic

Hajduk and Inter met at Poljud on Sunday, September 22, 2019. 

In addition to celebrating 40 years of Poljud, Hajduk celebrated another win. 

Caktas put Hajduk in the lead with a penalty in the 41st minute for 1:0 at the half. The second half saw two goals in three minutes - Stanko Juric scored for 2:0 Hajduk just moments after he entered the game, which was followed by Serderov’s goal for Inter. 

In the 86th minute, Jairo scored for 3:1 Hajduk, which was the final score of the game. 

Hajduk currently sits in first place with 19 points, while Inter is in the last place with 6. 

Istra v. Rijeka

Istria and Rijeka closed out the 9th round on Sunday, September 22, 2019, in Pula. 

Franko Andrijasevic scored for Rijeka already in the 6th. Minute, which was followed by a Loncar goal in the 45th for 0:2 at the half. Ivancic saw two yellow cards in the first half, forcing Istria to play a man down for the remainder of the game. 

Muric increased Rijeka’s lead to 0:3 in the 77th minute, which was the final score of the game. 

 

Istria is currently in 8th place with 8 points, while Rijeka moved into third place with 15 points. 

You can see the full HNL table here.

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

 

Sunday, 22 September 2019

Dino Skender No Longer Coach of NK Osijek

The defeat to Lokomotiva has ruled the fate of the now-former coach of Osijek, Dino Skender. 

Gol.hr reports that Dino Skender is no longer the coach of NK Osijek! The news was announced by Osijek club president Ivan Meštrović via the club's YouTube channel on Saturday. 

"I, as president, have to make moves that are sometimes popular, sometimes less popular. In my discussion with him, he actually initiated the fact that he would no longer be the coach of the Osijek first team,” said the president of the club. 

"Weird energy started to swirl in and around the club. This year we played 11 games, we outplayed our opponent both statistically and impressively, but unfortunately, the result in the championship does not indicate that,” said Mestrovic.

Osijek has played nine games in the Croatia First League and two in Europe, and has only recorded four wins in those matches. In the second round of the Europa League qualifiers, in the return match, CSKA Sofia went further after a better penalty shootout.

What particularly disturbed Mestrovic is the club's unfortunate scoring effect in the Croatian championship. Namely, Osijek has 13 points after nine rounds (with five games played at home and four away), with only three victories, the last of which was achieved almost a month ago.

Next week, the name of Skender's successor will be known, and in the next seven days, Osijek will have two exams - Tuesday, as part of the first round of the Croatian Cup when they will visit Vuteks Sloga in Vukovar, and next Saturday in the Croatian Championship against Slaven Belupo in Koprivnica.

This news comes after another shock in the Croatian First League on Saturday after Dinamo Zagreb lost to Varazdin - a team that has spent most of their time in the last place and was promoted from the Second League this season. 

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

Friday, 20 September 2019

VAR Technology to Premiere in Croatia During Junior Croatian First League Match

After months of training, the VAR football technology will be used for the first time in Croatia on September 22, 2019.

Namely, the Croatian Football Federation announced at the end of 2018 that it would begin the training of assistant video referees and prepare for the introduction of VAR technology into Croatian football. After the extensive training of referees, VAR technology is finally ready to premiere at an official match, announced HNS on Friday.

Ante Kulušić, HNS Vice-President, President of the Football Refereeing Commission, and project leader for the introduction of VAR technology in Croatia, announced that the VAR technology would premiere at the Junior Croatian First League game between Rudeš and Hajduk. The match will be played on September 22 at Kranjčevićeva Street Stadium, starting at 11 am.

With this match, Croatia will open the final phase of training referees for the introduction of VAR technology, according to the schedule prescribed by FIFA and IFAB. Referees began training for VAR technology in January 2019, with plans that by the end of the autumn part of the current season, all referees who have reached the final stage of the education will meet the required conditions, so that they can begin using the VAR technology in the spring part of the season in matches of the Croatian First League.

The match between the juniors of Rudeš and Hajduk will be refereed by Ivan Bebek, with assistant referees Ivica Modrić and Igor Križarić and fourth official Fran Jović. The role of the Assistant Video Referee (VAR) will be performed by Goran Gabrilo, and his Assistant (AVAR) will be Miro Grgić.

The VAR technology project was funded by the FIFA program Forward.

The VAR is system/concept reviews decisions made by the head referee with the use of video footage and a headset for communication. The 2018 World Cup was the first tournament to use VAR at all matches and in all venues. 

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

Monday, 16 September 2019

HNL Round 8 Recap: Rijeka and Hajduk Draw at Rujevica, Dinamo in 2nd

September 16, 2019 - After an international break, the 8th round of the Croatian First League was held from September 13 to 15, 2019. The highlight of this round was the Adriatic Derby between Rijeka and Hajduk. 

Dinamo v. Istria 1961 (1:0)

Dinamo and Istria met on Friday, September 13, 2019, to open the 8th round at Maksimir stadium in front of 2,700 spectators. 

The first half went without goals, though Gavranovic gave Dinamo the lead, and ultimately the win, after scoring in the 53rd minute for 1:0. 

Dinamo is currently in 2nd place with 16 points,  while Istria is in 7th with 8. 

Inter Zapresic v. Slaven Belupo (3:1)

Inter and Belupo met on Saturday, September 14, 2019, in Zapresic. 

All of the action in the game came in the second half after Serderov scored for the Inter lead in the 47th minute. Nowak equalized for Belupo just two minutes later for 1:1. 

Inter was unable to score again until the last minutes of the game, when Mlinar scored in the 87th for 2:1, and Mamut in the 3rd minute of added time for the final score of 3:1. 

Inter is currently in 9th place with 6 points, while Belupo is in 8th with 7. 

Gorica v. Lokomotiva (0:0)

Gorica and Lokomitiva met on Saturday, September 14,  2019, in Velika Gorica. 

Since neither team was able to score, the game ended 0:0. Brazilian Sammir, former Dinamo player and once a member of the Croatia national team, made his debut back on Croatian soil, this time for Lokomotiva, entering the game for Tolic in the 66th minute. 

 

Gorica is currently in 5th place with 12 points, while Lokomotiva is in 6th with 11. 

Osijek v. Varazdin (2:2)

Osijek and Varazdin met at City Garden Stadium on Sunday, September 15, 2019. 

Osijek was already up by two goals at the half thanks to Maric (’26) and Silva (’42). What seemed like a sure victory for Osijek was crushed after Varazdin managed two goals to equalize in the final minutes of the game - Djurasek scored in the 89th for 2:1, and Lisakovich in the second minute of added time for 2:2. 

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

Rijeka v. Hajduk (1:1)

The Adriatic Derby between Rijeka and Hajduk closed out the 8th round on Sunday, September 15, 2019, at a nearly sold out Rujevica stadium.

Rijeka was the first to score in the 31st minute for 1:0 at the half, though Hajduk’s young blood Teklic scored the equalizer in the 78th minute for 1:1, which was the final score of the game. This derby was also unique as it featured the return of Filip Bradaric and Franko Andrijasevic. Recall, both players were brought up in the Hajduk academy and played for Hajduk's first team, before playing together at Rijeka when they won the 2016/2017 season. 

Hajduk remains in first place with 16 points, while Rijeka is in 4th place with 12 points. 

You can see the full HNL table here

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

Monday, 2 September 2019

HNL Round 7 Recap: Hajduk Shocks Dinamo in Eternal Derby at Poljud

September 2, 2019 - The 7th round of the Croatian First League was held from August 30 to September 1, 2019, and featured the highly anticipated ‘Eternal Derby’ between Hajduk and Dinamo. 

Lokomotiva v. Slaven Belupo (6:1)

Lokomotiva and Belupo opened the 7th round of the Croatian First League at Kranjčevićeva Street stadium in Zagreb in front of 732 fans. 

Lokomotiva opened the game with two goals in the first half by Tolic and Kastrati for 2:0. Though the home team’s scoring spree was far from over. Cokaj increased Lokomotiva’s lead in the 46th minute for 3:0, followed by another goal by Kastrati in the 50th for 4:0. Fortunately, Belupo was able to get one goal in the 56th minute (penalty), which made the game 4:1. Drozdek, however, increased Lokomotiva’s lead to 5:1 in the 61st and Petrak scored Lokomotiva’s last of the game in the 80th minute for the final score of 6:1. 

Lokomotiva is currently in 6th place with 10 points, while Belupo is in 8th with 7. 

Hajduk v. Dinamo (1:0)

Hajduk and Dinamo met at Poljud on Saturday, August 31, 2019, in front of 29,359 fans for the first ‘Eternal Derby’ of the season. 

While the first half showed Dinamo’s strength, Hajduk was a new team in the second and spectators experience a true derby atmosphere. It wasn’t until the 56th minute when we saw the first and only goal of the game, which came from a stellar Jradi header over the top of Livaković’s head for 1:0 Hajduk. Diamo’s Dilaver was given a red card in the 75th minute, which was followed by the second yellow for Hajduk’s Jradi. Both teams finished the game with 10 men. The derby went without any major incidents, though two of Dinamo’s assistant coaches were also shown red cards in the second half. 

Hajduk is currently first on the table with 15 points, while Dinamo is in 2nd with 13. 

Istra 1961 v. Osijek (0:0)

Istra and Osijek met on Saturday, August 31, 2019, at Aldo Drosina stadium in Pula in front of 1,956 fans. 

The game went without any goals and ended at 0:0. 

Istra is currently in 7th place with 8 points, while Osijek is in 3rd with 12. 

Varaždin v. Gorica (1:3)

Varaždin and Gorica met on Sunday, September 1, 2019, at VK Varteks Stadium. 

Gorica’s Lovric was the first to score in the 20th minute for 0:1, though Benko came back to equalize in the 37th minute for 1:1 at the half. 

However, Gorica retook the lead thanks to another Lovric goal in the 57th minute, and a hat trick for Lovric increased Gorica’s lead to 1:3, which was the final score of the game. 

Varaždin is currently in the last place with 3 points, while Gorica is in 5th with 11. 

Rijeka v. Inter Zaprešić (1:1)

Rijeka and Inter closed out the 7th round on Sunday, September 1, 2019, at Rujevica stadium in front of 3,529 fans. 

Inter was awarded a penalty already in the second minute of the game, which put the guests up 0:1. Rijeka equalized in the 31st minute thanks to a goal by Gorgon. Neither team was able to score in the second half, and the game ended 1:1. 

Rijeka is currently in 4th place with 11 points, while Inter is in 9th place with 3. 

You can see the full table here

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

Saturday, 31 August 2019

30,000 Expected at Poljud for Eternal Derby between Hajduk and Dinamo

August 31, 2019 - On Saturday at 6:30 pm, the 7th round of the Croatian First League will feature the first derby this season between Dinamo and Hajduk. The two teams will meet at Poljud for what is known around the world as the ‘Eternal Derby’. 

It is a chance for Hajduk to reach the top of the standings after 1399 days, with the first victory against Dinamo at Poljud after 1259 days, reports Index.hr.

About 30,000 fans have been announced for the match, making it an ideal opportunity for Hajduk to get a crucial win in front of their fans. Dinamo fan group Bad Blue Boys are also arriving in large numbers, who will be escorted by police from Dugopolje at 4 pm and accompanied to the stadium.

The last time Hajduk celebrated against Dinamo they were led by coach Damir Buric, their coach currently. It was on March 20, 2016, and the winning goal for Hajduk was scored in the 4th minute by Fran Tudor, a footballer who is no longer a member of Hajduk after his contract expired this summer.

"Today, it is worth the same thing. We know how good the opponent is, but we also know what we can do. We have to bring the quality we showed in previous games," Buric said at a pre-match press conference on Friday.

However, Hajduk welcomes Dinamo without Ismajli, Edouk, Posavac, and Juric.

"Their absences have disturbed us a little. Juric is out thanks to a broken bone he didn’t even know he had. We will give those a chance who have not played a lot so far. We hope that Juric and Posavac will be ready for Rijeka. We cannot wait for the match against Dinamo. We don't have a chance to play the Champions League, but now we're going to see how we stand compared to a team playing in the Champions League."

Jakolis returns after suspension for exclusion, will he get a chance?

“I feel sorry for the guy because he is a player who plays with his heart and puts everything into the match. That was the case when he was expelled in Koprivnica. I think it was unfair to him and that exclusion was too strict. For every game, we have a plan. We know what lies ahead, and the most important thing is to design our game,” Buric said.

Dinamo coach Nenad Bjelica also spoke ahead of Saturday's game. 

“We expect to win, as always, no matter what stadium or who we play against. Hajduk has played very well in their last two games at home, defeating Lokomotiva and Gorica 3:0. A difficult task awaits us, but I think we are ready. We have recovered from the match against Rosenborg, as you know we have a very wide bench, we are probably going to use all of it and show our true face,” said the Dinamo coach, who was then asked if he dreamed more about Hajduk’s Caktaš or Kevin De Bruyne. 

"Neither," laughed Bjelica, and spoke about Hajduk's best player. "Mijo was the best goal scorer last season. We respect him very much. He can handle the game with a single action. We will have to pay attention to him and keep him in control from inside the box. But there are other dangerous players in Hajduk, like Jairo, and we will need maximum concentration to win."

With such a deep bench, we can certainly expect a change in Dinamo’s lineup compared to the match in Trondheim earlier this week, but Bjelica did not want to go into detail.

"We will see after training, and we will practice somewhere around Split. There certainly will be. Hajduk is always motivated against Dinamo, they will be carried by a full Poljud, but we have played in such atmospheres in Budapest and Trondheim, where there were also full stadiums with a great atmosphere, and we came out unscathed. I believe we will succeed in Split as well."

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