'This is bronze with a golden glow': Croatia edges Morocco to secure third place at FIFA World Cup 2022
DOHA, QATAR: Croatia has managed to tip off African Lions Morocco to the fourth place as they battled it out at FIFA World Cup 2022 in Qatar. It was their winger Mislav Orsic who netted a brilliant curled effort on 42 minutes that proved to be the deciding factor at the end of the game, as the scorecard read 2-1. Interestingly, it was Croatia that played finals in Russia against France in the 2018 World Cup and bagged a Silver medal. This time around their dream to lift the trophy was ended by Argentina in a 3-0 defeat in Semis.
"This is bronze with a golden glow. We won a tough game," said Croatia coach Zlatko Dalic. The man who led them to the World Cup final in the last tournament added, "This is a medal for the Croatian people... It's really great that we won two medals in two tournaments, big congratulations to my players." The last time the nation of 3 million finished third was during their first world cup appearance back in 1998. Though Morocco eventually finished fourth place, it was the best-ever finish by any African-Arab nation at the World Cups.
"Physically it was difficult, our players got tired, it was intense. We were given a 0.01% chance of winning the World Cup. Now, we are one of the top four teams in the world,” said Walid Regragui, Morocco coach. He added, “If you told me we would finish that far before the tournament, I would have accepted it straight away. We fought until the end. We wanted to please our fans. We're still happy, we're among the four best teams in the world. We provided everyone with a good show, we never gave up. Congratulations to Croatia, they deserve their third place."