The official website for European football

Pršo sparks Croatian celebration

Published: Thursday 20 November 2003
Slovenia 0-1 Croatia (agg: 1-2) Dado Pršo's goal just after the hour takes Croatia through to Portugal.

Match statistics

SloveniaCroatia

Goals scored0
1
Yellow cards1
 
2
Red cards0
1

Standings

 
Published: Thursday 20 November 2003

Pršo sparks Croatian celebration

Slovenia 0-1 Croatia (agg: 1-2) Dado Pršo's goal just after the hour takes Croatia through to Portugal.

Croatia emerged from Slovenia with a victory on the night and on aggregate to reach UEFA EURO 2004™ via the play-offs, and dash the ambitions of their neighbours.

Ten men victorious
The visitors were reduced to ten men on 59 minutes when Igor Tudor received his second yellow card, but they had dominated up to then and it was not long before Dado Pršo had scored his second goal of the tie, giving Croatia a lead they rarely looked like losing.

Croatian changes
Having ended the 1-1 first-leg draw in Zagreb the happier team, Slovenia made only one enforced change, with leading scorer Ermin Šiljak's suspension leaving a space for Mladen Rudonja. Away coach Otto Baric rang the changes, though, not only replacing the suspended Ivica Olic with the recalled Tomislav Šokota, but bringing in Robert Kovac, Josip Šimunic, Darijo Srna, Milan Rapaic and Giovani Rosso for Stjepan Tomas, Jerko Leko, Ivica Mornar, Mato Neretljak and Dario Šimic.

Post struck
Knowing they had to score to prevent an away-goals exit, Croatia attacked from the off. On seven minutes they came close to breaking the deadlock as Šokota struck a shot from the edge of the box only for it to rebound off the post. Niko Kovac then fired over from a similar position, but gradually Slovenia tightened matters in midfield.

Knavs busy
It was still the visitors who had the greater fluency despite their many changes from Saturday, with Aleksander Knavs busy in the home defence and Slovenian captain Miran Pavlin having to work tirelessly in midfield. Srna was proving a potent threat on the Croatian right, but was denied the space to send in a truly incisive cross.

Rosso miss
Only towards the end of the half did Croatia force more clear-cut chances. Two minutes from the interval, a Rapaic corner was headed on goal and saved by Mladen Dabanovic, but from only five metres out Rosso put the rebound over the bar. Having not had a shot in the first half, Slovenia introduced Adem Kapic to reinvigorate their midfield during the break.

Tudor dismissed
However, Croatia had the better of the early second-half exchanges, only to find the Slovenian defence determined not to let them through. On 59 minutes, though, the visitors were reduced to ten men as Tudor's foul on Amir Karic earned the Juventus FC man a red card.

Visitors ahead
But if Slovenia thought they might take the initiative, within two minutes they were behind. Just as in Zagreb, it was the in-form Pršo who was on target, as he ran on to Šokota's through-ball and poked the ball past Dabanovic. Even after the goal, Croatia kept pushing, knowing another would leave Slovenia needing to score three. Substitute Ermin Rakovic did have an effort on goal for the home team on the 73-minute mark, but he headed Zlatko Zahovic's cross wide.

Effort blocked
After that Pršo was withdrawn for Leko as Croatia sought to protect their advantage. And although Slovenia began to press forward, they were never allowed a clear sight of goal. Šokota was even able to break and curl the ball wide for the visitors, while Pavlin found his effort soon after blocked.

Late push
Time was ebbing away for Slovenia, and despite a late push aided by the advancing Dabanovic, they could not prise open the visiting defence and it was Croatia who booked their passage to Portugal.

Last updated: 20/11/03 11.29CET

http://www.uefa.com/uefaeuro/season=2004/matches/round=1580/match=73612/postmatch/report/index.html#prso+sparks+croatian+celebration

Lineups

Slovenia

Slovenia

Croatia

Croatia

12
DabanovičMladen Dabanovič (GK)
1
PletikosaStipe Pletikosa (GK)
2
F. CipotFabijan Cipot
Substitution89
2
SrnaDarijo Srna
3
KaričAmir Karič
Yellow Card11
3
ŠimunićJosip Šimunić
Substitution52
4
VugdalicMuamer Vugdalic
4
R.KovačRobert Kovač
6
KnavsAleksander Knavs
5
TudorIgor Tudor
Red/Yellow Card59
7
ŠukaloGoran Šukalo
Substitution68
6
ŽivkovićBoris Živković (C)
8
ČehNastja Čeh
7
RapaićMilan Rapaić
Substitution68
10
ZahovičZlatko Zahovič
8
RossoGiovanni Rosso
11
PavlinMiran Pavlin (C)
9
PršoDado Pršo
Goal61
Substitution75
13
RudonjaMladen Rudonja
Substitution46
10
N.KovačNiko Kovač
18
AčimovičMilenko Ačimovič
11
ŠokotaTomo Šokota

Substitutes

22
B MavričBorut Mavrič (GK)
12
ButinaTomislav Butina (GK)
14
RakovičErmin Rakovič
Substitution68
13
TomasStjepan Tomas
Substitution68
16
BulajičSpasoje Bulajič
Substitution89
14
LekoJerko Leko
Substitution75
Yellow Card90
17
KapicAdem Kapic
Substitution46
15
BabićMarko Babić
Substitution52
15
CesarBoštjan Cesar
16
AgićJasmin Agić
19
SešlarSimon Sešlar
17
ZekićZoran Zekić
20
KorenRobert Koren
18
MornarIvica Mornar

Coach

Bojan Prašnikar (SVN) Otto Barić (SRB)

Referee

Urs Meier (SUI)

Assistant referees

Rudolf Käppeli (SUI), Martin Iseli (SUI)

Fourth official

Philippe Leuba (SUI)

Legend:

  • GoalsGoals
  • Own goalOwn goal
  • PenaltiesPenalties
  • Missed PenaltiesMissed Penalties
  • reds_cardRed Cards
  • yellow_cardsYellow cards
  • yellow_red_cardsYellow/red card
  • SubstitutionSubstitution
  • © 1998-2013 UEFA. All rights reserved.
  • The UEFA word, the UEFA logo and all marks related to UEFA competitions, are protected by trade marks and/or copyright of UEFA. No use for commercial purposes may be made of such trade marks. Use of UEFA.com signifies your agreement to the Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy.