Croatia are eager to get their own back after losing to Turkey on penalties in the quarter-finals of UEFA EURO 2008 as the sides meet again in the play-offs for the 2012 tournament.
Slaven Bilić, Croatia coach
We have been waiting and dreaming about getting our revenge for three years. We all remember how we lost that EURO 2008 quarter-final. Yes, Turkey is are strong opponents, but we are stronger. It won't be easy. Turkey are probably the toughest opponents we could have had, but I think we have more class; we are the better team and we must win this and reach the EURO.
Oğuz Çetin, Turkey assistant coach
We have been drawn against strong opponents. We know Croatia from EURO 2008. We'll be up against a team whose playing style is similar to ours, and they have a good reputation in Europe. We have to prepare for the matches as well as we can without forgetting that it's a two-legged tie. The Turkish Super League has a very busy schedule until the end of the month. Most probably, our squad will gather on Sunday 6 November.
It might seem a disadvantage to play the first match at home but we don't think so. The result of the first match will be decisive, so we'll develop our game plan accordingly.
UEFA EURO 2000
Republic of Ireland 1-1 Turkey
Turkey 0-0 Republic of Ireland (Turkey win on away goals)
2002 FIFA World Cup
Austria 0-1 Turkey
Turkey 5-0 Austria
UEFA EURO 2004
Latvia 1-0 Turkey
Turkey 2-2 Latvia
2006 FIFA World Cup
Switzerland 2-0 Turkey
Turkey 4-2 Switzerland (Switzerland win on away goals)
1998 FIFA World Cup
Croatia 2-0 Ukraine
Ukraine 1-1 Croatia
UEFA EURO 2004
Croatia 1-1 Slovenia
Slovenia 0-1 Croatia
The sides last met at the Ernst-Happel-Stadion in Vienna at UEFA EURO 2008. Bilić's Croatia were on the verge of a semi-final place after Ivan Klasnić struck in the 119th minute only for Semih Şentürk to score a dramatic equaliser in the dying seconds. Fatih Terim's Turkey won the shoot-out 3-1 (Luka Modrić, Ivan Rakitić and Mladen Petrić all missed for Croatia) to progress to a last-four meeting against Germany which they lost 3-2.
The teams for that game on 20 June 2008 were:
Croatia: Stipe Pletikosa*, Josip Šimunić*, Robert Kovač, Vedran Ćorluka*, Ivan Rakitić*, Niko Kovač, Darijo Srna*, Luka Modrić*, Ivica Olić* (Ivan Klasnić*, 7 Ex.), Niko Kranjčar* (Mladen Petrić*, 65), Danijel Pranjić*.
Turkey: Rüştü Reçber, Hakan Balta*, Gökhan Zan*, Mehmet Topal* (Semih Şentürk*, 76), Nihat Kahveci* (Gökdeniz Karadeniz, 27 Ex.), Arda Turan*, Emre Aşık, Tuncay Şanlı*, Kazım Kazım* (Uğur Boral 61), Sabri Sarıoğlu*, Hamit Altıntop*.
*players featured in UEFA EURO 2012 qualifying.
Turkey were the opposition for Croatia's tournament debut at EURO '96 and Bilić, now coach of Croatia but then a fixture in their defence, would settle happily for a repeat of the result that day, Goran Vlaović scoring the only goal in Nottingham after 86 minutes.
The teams for that game on 11 June 1996 were:
Turkey: Rüştü Reçber, Alpay Özalan, Vedat İnceefe, Tugay Kerimoğlu, Ogün Temizkanoğlu, Hakan Şükür, Rahim Zafer, Sergen Yalçın, Abdullah Ercan, Arif Erdem (Hami Mandıralı, 82), Tolunay Kafkas (Saffet Sancaklı, 89).
Croatia: Dražen Ladić, Robert Jarni, Igor Štimac, Nikola Jerkan, Slaven Bilić, Aljoša Asanović, Robert Prosinečki, Davor Šuker (Dubravko Pavličić 90), Zvonimir Boban (Zvonimir Soldo, 57), Alen Bokšic (Goran Vlaović, 73), Mario Stanić.
The teams other two meetings have both ended in draws. It finished 1-1 when they faced off in June 1997 in a Kirin Cup match in the Japanese city of Sendai. Ertuğrul Sağlam's 80th-minute goal cancelled out Tomislav Erceg's opener for Croatia in a game where Croatia's Dario Šimić and Turkey's Rüştü Reçber both featured.
Turkey fought back from two goals down to earn a draw in their other meeting, a Zagreb friendly in March 2004. Croatia led 2-0 through goals from Tomo Šokota (2) and Srna (72) but within six minutes of their second goal it was 2-2 after Turkey's Zafer Biryol (73) and Çağdaş Atan (78) found the net.
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