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Croatia Players to Watch at UEFA Euro 2024

Croatian players celebrate during friendly with Portugal

Ever since they first emerged on the international football scene, at UEFA EURO 1996 Croatia was always known for producing players of immense quality and skill. Back then, it had been the likes of Davor Suker, Robert Prosinecki, or Zvonimir Boban, just to name a few. Here, we bring you a trio of Croatia players to watch ahead of the upcoming EURO 2024 tournament in Germany.

They may not yet be nearly as glamorous as the stars named above for the continental competition 28 years ago, but there is a strong possibility that they will get there. They are Lovro Majer of VfL Wolfsburg, Ante Budimir of CA Osasuna as well as Josip Stanisic, a Bayern Munich player, who spent last season on loan at Bayer Leverkusen.

Croatia Players to Watch at Uefa Euro 2024

Lovro Majer

Majer may well be the most underrated of the Croatia players to watch prior to this tournament. The 26-year-old who joined his current club from Stade Rennes last summer may have underperformed in Wolfsburg, as did that whole club, who were expected to qualify for European football. He nonetheless contributed with five goals and seven assists.

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In any case, national team coach Zlatko Dalic has high hopes that Majer will perform at what will likely be his first major international tournament as a consistent starter. He has done well with Croatia so far when called upon and is set to make the right-winger position his own in Dalic’s 4-3-3 formation at the upcoming Euros. Having scored two goals against North Macedonia and also performed well in a subsequent 2-1 victory over Portugal at the weekend, he could have a breakout campaign.

Ante Budimir

With 17 goals in 33 La Liga games this past season, Budimir has every reason to be confident in his goalscoring abilities. That is something that the Vatreni have missed in recent tournaments.

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The problem is that the 32-year-old only has three international goals to his name. He will need to adapt to the way they play and get past Bruno Petkovic, his main competitor to the starting centre-forward spot. But there is hope for that, as he began Croatia’s final warmup game against Portugal and scored the winning goal there. If Dalic finds a way to best utilise Budimir’s strengths at this tournament, the sky may be the limit.

Josip Stanisic

Last, but certainly not least on our list of Croatia players to watch in this coming Euros, Stanisic is a 24-year-old defensive allrounder, who has also found his scoring touch under Leverkusen coach Xabi Alonso. Like Majer, he made the last World Cup squad, but this should be his first tournament as a regular starter. He has always had talent, but now confidence and experience come into the mix after his successful loan spell.


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