In the post-World Cup final press conference, Croatian head coach Zlato Dalic congratulated France on their World Cup triumph, highlighted the enormous effort of his team but refused to be drawn into much talk about referee Nestor Pitana, apart from saying that he felt that penalty against his team should not have been given.
“I never comment on the referee and I don’t want to waste time on that. I just want to say one sentence about that penalty: You don't give a penalty like that in a World Cup final,” Dalic told reporters.
"The best game we played in the tournament"
But the Croatia coach said he did not want to detract from France’s victory and congratulated his opponents for being World Cup winners.
“I congratulate France on their title. We played well in the first 20 minutes, we controlled the game. Then there was an own goal from a set play. We came back to life, dominated and then the penalty was given,” Dalic said.
“I have to congratulate my players, it was maybe the best game we played in this tournament; we controlled the match but we conceded. Against such a strong side as France you must not make mistakes. We are a bit sad, but we have to be proud as well for what we’ve done.”