Words can be bitter, and Luka Modric knew when to launch a scathing attack at those who chose to dismiss Croatia's chances of success ahead of their semi-final clash against England.
Speaking in an interview with English TV network ITV, the talented midfielder was all smiles after beating the Three Lions with a 2-1 score. Just like he takes advantage of a minimal space to send a through ball to his team-mates, he didn't waste any time to hit back at some journalists who believed that the English side would be in for a walk in the park against the Vatreni.
Have a look at what Modric said in the post-match interview (Image might be geo-restricted).
Strong words from Luka Modric post-match:— ITV Football (@itvfootball) July 11, 2018
"English journalists, pundits from television, they underestimated Croatia tonight and that was a huge mistake. All these words from them we take, we were reading and we were saying 'ok, today we will see who will be tired'" pic.twitter.com/Rxyv4WA03c
(Here is Modric's full statement, just in case you weren't able to watch the clip.)
"We proved everything differently than people were talking, especially English journalists, pundits from TV, they underestimated Croatia tonight, and that was a huge mistake. All these words from them, we took them, we were reading, and we said 'we'll see who will be tired tonight'. Like I said, they should be more humble and respect their opponents a bit more. We showed again that we were not tired. We dominated the game physically and mentally, in all aspects. We should have killed the game even before extra time, and now this is an amazing achievement for us, it's a dream come true, after such a long time we're in the final, biggest success in Croatian history in this sport, and we have to proud."
(How does reaching the World Cup final compare to the other accomplishments in his career)
"I would say that it's one of the best, if not the best, hopefully if we win it, it will be by far the greatest accomplishment of my career."