On the evidence of their convincing 3-0 win over Argentina on Wednesday night, Croatia would give any team at this summer’s World Cup a serious run for their money.
Zlatko Dalic’s side left their South American opponents on the brink of elimination thanks to three second-half goals from Ante Rebic, Luka Modric and Ivan Rakitic.
Although Argentina were extremely poor in Nizhniy Novgorod, Croatia helped make Jorge Sampaoli’s men look ordinary. This was a hugely impressive team performance from the European nation.
Croatia are now priced at 14/1 to win the World Cup with most bookmakers, which still seems decent value for a team with quality in most areas of the pitch.
No team will relish facing the Croatians, who defeated Nigeria 2-0 in their opening match, in the knockout stages.
It was Modric who picked up the Man of the Match award after his stunning display against Lionel Messi and co.
The 32-year-old capped a fine individual performance with a superb goal from outside the penalty area.
Arbeloa's tweet about Modric goes viral
One of Modric’s former Real Madrid teammates, Alvaro Arbeloa, posted a tweet about the diminutive midfielder just before full-time - and it’s gone viral.
Arbeloa posted a photo of Modric alongside the caption: “The best 10 in the world: Luka Modric”.
The retired Spain international’s post has been retweeted almost 30,000 times and ‘liked’ over 72,000 times. Seriously impressive numbers, Alvaro.
No doubt that he was also having a sly dig at Messi, who was wearing the No. 10 shirt for Argentina at the same time. Arbeloa rarely misses the opportunity to antagonise Barcelona fans.
Modric: The world's best midfielder right now?
However, there’s certainly an argument to suggest that Modric is currently the world’s best midfielder.
His Real Madrid teammate Toni Kroos certainly runs him close, however, and then there are the likes of N’Golo Kante, David Silva, Sergio Busquets, Christian Eriksen and, on his day, Paul Pogba.
But Modric has just helped Real Madrid win their third European Cup in a row and has now inspired Croatia to the World Cup knockout stages.
The stats he posted against Argentina were very impressive: 62 touches, 42 passes, three interceptions, two chances created, two out or two tackles won, three aerial duels won, two shots and, of course, one goal.
He’s the best in the business right now.
Do you agree with Alvaro Arbeloa’s tweet about Luka Modric? Have your say by leaving a comment below.