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Croatia clinch top spot with victory in Latvia

Published: Wednesday 3 September 2014, 20.07CET
Latvia 1-3 Croatia
Nenad Gracan's men won their final Group 5 fixture in Jelgava to guarantee top spot in the section and a play-off place.
by Dmitry Portnov
from Zemgales Olympic Centre
Croatia clinch top spot with victory in Latvia
Ante Rebić (right) scored Croatia's second from the penalty spot ©Ivan Klindić

Standings

Published: Wednesday 3 September 2014, 20.07CET

Croatia clinch top spot with victory in Latvia

Latvia 1-3 Croatia
Nenad Gracan's men won their final Group 5 fixture in Jelgava to guarantee top spot in the section and a play-off place.

Croatia secured a UEFA European Under-21 Championship play-off spot as a three goals in a 22-minute spell helped Nenad Gracan's side claim victory in Jelgava.

Croatia travelled to Latvia knowing success would clinch top spot regardless of what happens when Ukraine play Switzerland on Thursday, but the hosts failed to take advantage of a good first-half display. Dražen Bagarić’s opener (48) and Ante Rebić’s spot-kick just four minutes later put the home side immediately on the back foot after the restart. Dario Župarić secured victory (70) after Latvia reduced the deficit with Vladislavs Gutkovskis's strike (55).

Antonio Milić and Stipe Perica were denied by Latvia goalkeeper Georgijs Čižovs as the visitors traded efforts with their opponents in the first-half. Jānis Ikaunieks and Gutkovskis missed good opportunities for Latvia before Croatia took control of the game in a devastating second-half spell as the hosts found themselves 2-0 down inside four minutes.

Bagarić scored after good work by Rebić who doubled the lead from the penalty-spot. Dario Župarić finished from close-range following another assist from Rebić, 15 minutes after what turned out to be a consolation goal for Latvia through Gutkovskis.

Last updated: 04/06/15 4.29CET

http://www.uefa.com/under21/season=2015/matches/round=2000412/match=2011483/postmatch/report/index.html#croatia+secure+spot

Lineups

Latvia

Latvia

Croatia

Croatia

12
ČižovsGeorgijs Čižovs (GK)
1
ZelenikaOliver Zelenika (GK)
3
Flaksis Reinis Flaksis (C)
2
Gorupec Toni Gorupec
Yellow Card36
4
BarinovsVitālijs Barinovs
3
A. MilićAntonio Milić
7
D. IkaunieksDāvis Ikaunieks
Substitution49
4
ŽuparićDario Župarić
Yellow Card36
Goal70
8
KazačoksJevgeņijs Kazačoks
Substitution79
5
DatkovićNiko Datković (C)
9
UlimbaševsDaniils Ulimbaševs
Yellow Card51
Substitution77
6
GalovićNino Galović
10
IkaunieksJānis Ikaunieks
7
PavičićDomagoj Pavičić
Yellow Card90+3
11
VorobjovsSergejs Vorobjovs
Yellow Card34
9
PericaStipe Perica
Substitution74
14
E. ŠlampeEndijs Šlampe
10
CaktašMijo Caktaš
Substitution62
17
GutkovskisVladislavs Gutkovskis
Goal55
11
RebićAnte Rebić
Goal52
Yellow Card85
Substitution89
18
KlimaševičsDmitrijs Klimaševičs
Yellow Card52
16
BagarićDražen Bagarić
Goal48
Yellow Card61

Substitutes

1
VaražinskisRaivo Varažinskis (GK)
12
LivakovićDominik Livaković (GK)
2
BērenfeldsŅikita Bērenfelds
8
J. MišićJosip Mišić
5
Jermolajevs Edgars Jermolajevs
Substitution49
13
PrengaHerdi Prenga
6
KiriļinsAndrejs Kiriļins
Substitution77
14
ČanadjijaDario Čanadjija
13
StuglisElvis Stuglis
15
RogMarko Rog
Substitution74
15
ŠadčinsIlja Šadčins
17
MišićPetar Mišić
Substitution89
16
ReiIgors Rei
Substitution79
18
ĆorićAnte Ćorić
Substitution62

Coach

Dainis Kazakevičs (LVA) Nenad Gracan (CRO)

Referee

Peter Kralović (SVK)

Assistant referees

Miroslav Benko (SVK), Michal Tomčík (SVK)

Fourth official

Pavol Šuniar (SVK)

Legend:

  • GoalsGoals
  • Own goalOwn goal
  • PenaltiesPenalties
  • Missed PenaltiesMissed Penalties
  • reds_cardRed Cards
  • yellow_cardsYellow cards
  • yellow_red_cardsYellow/red card
  • SubstitutionSubstitution
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