Croatia showed once again they are the masters of walking football | Nick Ames
05-Dec-2022 20:59:19 | The Guardian
Despite a lack of pace, Zlatko Dalic’s side have a habit of wearing the opposition down as Japan found out in a shootout defeat
As Croatia’s players tore across from all directions to mob Mario Pasalic it was tempting to wonder how many of them had recorded their highest speed of the night. Their victory on penalties had been on the cards as soon as the clock ticked into extra time: as Japan’s fire fizzled out, the muscles tightening and knocks mounting, the triumph of deliberate knowhow over slick, joyful but sometimes loose entertainment came to feel as inevitable as the rising sun.
Croatia showed once again that they are the masters of walking football. It is an observation, not a slight: no other top international side lacks pace to such a marked degree but they invariably contrive to make sure it does not matter. That takes a preternatural collective knowhow, an assuredness that the first yard or two are in the head, a confidence that nobody should be putting in more miles than the ball itself. With it comes a pronounced lack of fear about the prospect of taking things the full distance. Continue reading...Read More