Croatia played another painful match at this year’s EURO 2024, and Iceland taught a handball lesson to the idealess national team.
CROATIA – ICELAND 30:35 (18:16)
CROATIA: Mandić – Jelinić, Šoštarić, Načinović, Srna, Karačić, Klarica, Kuzmanović, Mihić, Glavaš, Kušan, Šipić, Lučin, Mamić, Duvnjak, Cindrić, Maraš
ICELAND: Halgrimsson – Elisson, Gudjonsson, Vidarsson, Palmarsson, G. Kristansson, Magnusson, Gustafsson, Valencia, Rikardsson, Arnasson, Gislasson, Jonsson, Thartarsson, Smarasson, G. Kristjansson
Croatia played one of the worst matches in this EHF EURO 2024. With the game they showed in the second half, Croatia did not even deserve to be in this tournament. If they are going to play like this in the next match, the Croatian players shouldn’t go on the field against Germany.
The first half was marked by a lot of errors by Croatia, and Iceland somehow managed to keep pace with the opponent. Although Iceland was without one of their best players due to a red card, they did not give up their fight and aggression. This put them two goals down. We should mention that Mandić and Kuzmanović were very good. But what is that worth when Croatia’s attack was not working as it should?
Croatia made several mistakes in the second half, and Iceland took advantage of this and scored two goals. Croatia looked disorganized and played without any plan. It is unusual that Croatia has no idea and is quick in every segment of the game. Something has to change in the system of Croatian handball. Iceland has learned a real lesson in how to play.
What’s going on with Croatian handball? Perhaps a weak league and individuals who work on their own. Perhaps the poor preparations took their toll. Perhaps the “we’ll take it easy” approach is to blame against the so-called weaker teams like Austria or Iceland. Croatia was unprepared for this tournament, except for Spain, which was eliminated in the second round. It’s a shame, at least for the goalkeepers we have.