EURO 2016

Modric: Croatia boss says Real Madrid man could face Spain

Ante Cacic also railed at the crowd trouble that caused play to be halted in his team's Group D draw with the Czech Republic on Friday.

Modric: Croatia boss says Real Madrid man could face Spain
YURI KOCHETKOV EFE

Croatia coach Ante Cacic slammed the crowd trouble that marred his side's 2-2 Euro 2016 draw with the Czech Republic on Friday.

With Cacic's men 2-1 up deep into the second half, the Group D clash had to be stopped after Croatian fans threw flares on to the pitch, with fighting also breaking out in the stands.

Once play was restarted, the Czechs equalised with a stoppage-time penalty to prevent their opponents from sealing their place in the last 16.

Croatian apology

UEFA has charged Croatia over the incidents, with the country's football federation issuing an apology.

Croatia players gesture towards their fans as flares lie on the pitch.

Speaking to the press on Saturday, Cacic declared: "These hooligans aren't going to stop Croatia. On the contrary: this episode has to make us stronger and more together than ever."

On Friday, Cacic had branded those responsible as 'sports terrorists', explaining: "They are not really Croatia supporters. These people are scary and I call them hooligans."

Modric absence would be a 'handicap'

Key midfielder Luka Modric limped off with a muscle problem during the stalemate in Saint-Étienne, but Cacic did not completely rule out his chances of facing Spain in the teams' final group game.

"We'll see how he feels," the 62-year-old commented. "It hasn't been decided yet that he isn't going to play. [But] it's clear that if he doesn't play, it's a handicap for us."

Croatia take on the holders - who are already through after beating Turkey 3-0 - needing a point to ensure they progress to the knockout stages.