Luka Modric is ‘targeting Euro 2024’ as his ‘last dance’ – at the age of 38 – with Croatia star ‘vowing NOT to retire from international football’ after Nations League shoot-out defeat by Spain
Sunday’s heartbreaking Nations League final defeat by Spain will not be Luka Modric’s last act in a Croatia shirt, a new report has claimed.
The Real Madrid star, who will turn 38 in September, wore a pained expression as Croatia were beaten 5-4 in a penalty shoot-out in defeat by Spain.
But Croatian newspaper 24Sata has now claimed that Modric is determined to play on, with Euro 2024, when he will be approaching his 39th birthday, to be his ‘last dance’ for the national team.
Modric, captain of his country, picked up his 166th cap in the shoot-out loss by Spain and questions were soon swirling if it would be his last.
‘I have decided my future,’ he told reporters after the final, keeping his decision quiet. ‘The choice is very clear in my mind, but I will not say or announce anything today.’
The international future of Luka Modric is a hot topic in his homeland of Croatia right now
From the team’s perspective keeping Modric around for one last tournament run is of paramount importance.
‘We need him, this is a generation that still did not complete the job,’ manager Zlatko Dalic told Croatian media on Monday after landing back in Zagreb.
‘It was rather emotional for him yesterday,’ Dalic added.
‘Let him rest and he will tell us what he thinks.’
Modric has had two bites at international glory against the odds with Croatia, finishing as runner-up at the 2018 World Cup and more recently in the Nations League final.
Croatia also finished third in the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.
Should Modric ratify reports that he is sticking on through to Euro 2024, Croatia are next in action in qualifiers for that tournament, against Latvia and Armenia in September.
He is expected to stay on for one more tournament run, finishing with a run at Euro 2024