8 veterans likely to play final World Cup match in Qatar

Croatia are considering Canada coach John Herdman’s post-match comments at the World Cup

DOHA, Qatar – An emotional John Herdman apparently gave Croatia bulletin board material ahead of Sunday’s World Cup clash with Canada.

Immediately after Wednesday’s 1-0 loss to second-ranked Belgium — a game in which No. 41 Canada dominated play but failed to score — Herdman shared what he learned on the field after the game. Told the players.

“I told them they’re here and we’re going to go and go to Croatia,” he said with a smile in FIFA’s official post-match interview. “It’s as simple as it gets.”

No. 12 Croatia lost and Canada’s hopes of reaching the knockout stages from Group F were dashed.

Asked about Herdman’s comments, Croatia coach Zlatko Dalic said that everyone has their own communication style.

“I’m not sure how good it is to say something like that but it’s his right,” he added through an interpreter. “I think we have to show on the field that we are good.”

On Thursday, a Croatian reporter asked Herdman about his opinion.

“Did you really say after last night’s game that you were going to F-word Croatia? And if you did, is it significantly less…Croatia as (the) second place in the last World Cup?

Herdman didn’t back down, but was more diplomatic this time.

“Good question,” he said. “Oh yeah, I did. You say those things in a fun moment, try to inspire your team in the huddle. And when you’re asked what you said in that huddle, yeah, that’s it.” What did I say?

“It’s not about the Croatian people and the Croatian national team, respectively. I know very well where they are in the world. But at this moment, you took your men to another place. You took your team. He’s brought it to another point – that we’re here to be fearless and bring everything we can to this game.

“I don’t mean any disrespect to the Croatian team and the Croatian people, but at the end of the day that’s the mentality Canada’s going to have if we’re going to get three points against one of the best teams in the world. And that’s the mentality we’re going to have.” Let’s go to Belgium. We need to find out. This is part of the ‘new Canada,'” he said, referring to the label he gave his team.

Asked about his meeting with the Croatia team, Herdmann called his midfield three “the best in the world”, saying it would be an honor to play Luka Modric, who he described as “the best of his time”. Called Nasl Midfielder.

“And these (Canadian) guys get a chance to compete against him and we’re excited.”

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