DECEMBER 6 2007 16:05h
Luka Modric has probably played his last minutes on Maksimir’s grass in Dinamo’s shirt, but he left a deep trace.
The last of the three Maksimir jewels, Luka Modric may have played his last minutes in the blue shirt. He apologised to Zagreb for the defeat, but he will leave Maksimir 128 as a great winner. After a many year break, he who was the key wheel that led Dinamo to European autumn, which did not start off for others. The match against HSV Hamburg as all the others in the UEFA Cup showed that, although he is bothered by injuries, and he was particularly guarded by adversary players, he is the best individual in the team. He credibly runs on the field, every actions starts from him – he is Dinamo’s alfa and omega.
The question that stops and bother all the supporters of Dinamo is what will it be like after Luka? It is very hard to give a precise and logical answer. The blues survived the departure of Vedran Corluka and Eduardo da Silva, but this happened exactly because of this genius from Zadar. Dinamo’s situation without Luka is best pictured by the way the blues joke on the fields of great strength such as Medjimurje, Cibalia and other Croatian clubs. Compliments to the adversaries, but they are not even half of the teams that stand on the way to the European spring. The same as you can not find upset Dinamo players, because they are all young boys who have a bright future in front of them. However, they have to pick a new leader who will raise the team in the key moments as Luka did in Amsterdam, Bremen, Bergen and in the other matches of this season.
What will it be like after Luka?
The first name in this election is Ognjen Vukojevic. The young defender who found the way to the national team with his game is the first choice. Since his return from Belgium he has gradually integrated in the team, and now he is an unchangeable part. He is loved by the fans and if his injuries pass, he will carry Dinamo on his back. Of course, we must not forget the return of Igor Biscan, and next to them are Mario Mandzukic, Josip Tadic, Dino Drpic, Nikola Pokrivac and many others. Dinamo surely looses, probably another European frustration will follow, but the question is the time when this generation will give away a new jewel that could lead Dinamo into European competitions again.
However, with the performance against HSV the curtains fall on the end of a great step in the blues’ history, and an applause of over 20 thousand supporters saluted Luka Modric for the last time. From January we will be able to see him in the Spanish or the English championship where Croatians will play with the top footballers. And in Croatia remains the return to reality with the home league.