Euro 2024: How Croatia Can Still Reach the Knockout Stages After Draw Against Italy

Euro 2024: How Croatia Can Still Reach the Knockout Stages After Draw Against Italy

Isaac Darko
updated at June 25, 2024 at 6:22 AM
In this article:
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Luka Modrić logo
L. Modrić
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  • Croatia were held to a 1-1 draw against Italy as the defending champions advanced to the knockouts of Euro this year
  • The 2018 World Cup runners-up ended the group stages with two points but still have a slim chance to make the last 16
  • Sports Brief looks at the scenarios that could see Luka Modric and his teammates advance in their quest for Euro glory

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Croatia's path to the Euro 2024 knockout stages remains open despite ending their group stage with just two points. However, they need specific results to fall in their favour.

Luka Modric's goal in the second half against Italy last night, June 24, briefly put Croatia in position to secure second place in Group B and an automatic spot in the Round of 16.

Luka Modric, Croatia, Italy, Euro 2024, Red Bull Arena, Leipzig, Germany, How Croatia can qualify.
Luka Modric looks dejected during Croatia's Euro 2024 1-1 draw against Italy at Red Bull Arena on June 24, 2024. Photo by Peter Lous.
Source: Getty Images

Unfortunately, a 97th-minute equaliser from Mattia Zaccagni ensured Italy's advancement instead, leaving Croatia in third place with a minus-three goal difference.

Given their current standing, Croatia's progression to the knockout stages is improbable, as only the top four third-placed teams advance.

Currently, Croatia sit in fifth place in the six-team ranking, ahead of Czechia, who still have a game left in Group F, per Sportskeeda.

How Croatia can still qualify for Knockout phase

For Croatia to qualify, they rely on a series of specific outcomes. Group A's third-placed team, Hungary, along with the third-placed teams from Groups D and E, are guaranteed to finish ahead of Croatia due to having three points each.

The hopes of Modric and co. rest on results from Groups C and F, per The Independent.

In Group C, Croatia needs Slovenia to lose to England by more than three goals or exactly 3-0, while Denmark must defeat Serbia.

In Group F, defeats for both Czechia and Georgia by Turkey and Portugal respectively would leave these teams with one point each, allowing Croatia to finish ahead of them.

While the odds are against the Vatreni, the unpredictability of tournament football means that surprising outcomes are always possible.

Modric among top stars defying age

Sports Brief also previously highlighted six top football stars over 35, including Luka Modric, who continue to perform at an elite level.

Despite the general consensus that players peak in their 20s and begin to drop off in their 30s, some stars are still defying the odds.

Isaac Darko photo
Isaac Darko
Isaac Darko is a La Liga, Ligue 1 and Bundesliga editor at Sports Brief with a Degree in Journalism and Communications from Ghana Institute of Journalism (2010)