Luka Modric

Zagreb, Aug 29 (IANS) Real Madrid’s Croatian midfielder Luka Modric was named as the new captain of the national team on Monday, while the captain’s armband will be rotated between Ivan Rakitic and Vedran Corluka in his absence.

“This is a beautiful feeling, I’m so proud. I would like to thank the head coach (Ante Cacic) for having confidence in me, and I hope to justify my new role,” said Modric.

Veteran left-back Darijo Srna retired from international football after the European Championship in France, creating the vacancy of the post of captain in the national team.

Croatia will open the 2018 World Cup qualifying campaign behind closed doors in Zagreb, on September 5 against Turkey.

“In France, we have all seen what our fans mean to us. It is difficult to play behind closed doors, but unfortunately we have already been involved in such matches,” Modric said.

“However, there should be no alibi, we need to focus, prepare well, and start with a victory.”

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    The IANS was founded by Indian American publisher Gopal Raju as the India Abroad News Service. It was later renamed the Indo-Asian News Service.

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