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Croatia eager to scratch Spain itch

Spain eked out a 1-0 win against Croatia at UEFA EURO 2012, with the holders unbeaten in 22 years against their Group D rivals going into their meeting in Bordeaux.

Background: Croatia v Spain ©Getty Images

Croatia have not beaten Spain since 1994, but after a narrow defeat at UEFA EURO 2012 will hope better things lie ahead in Group D.

Previous meetings
• Croatia's record in five matches against Spain is W1 D1 L3. They have not won any of the sides' last four meetings. Robert Prosinečki and Davor Šuker struck in a 2-0 friendly triumph in Valencia in March 1994 – Croatia's first away victory since independence.

• In their only previous competitive fixture, Spain defeated Croatia 1-0 in their final group game at UEFA EURO 2012 thanks to Jesús Navas's 88th-minute strike, the holders advancing at their opponents' expense. All four of the teams' previous meetings had been friendlies.

Croatia's EURO star: Luka Modrić

EURO facts – Croatia
• This is Croatia's fifth EURO final tournament – they have missed out only once since independence, at UEFA EURO 2000, and this is their fourth successive finals. They have twice reached the last eight and twice bowed out at the group stage.

• Croatia's greatest achievement in international football to date is picking up a bronze medal at the 1998 FIFA World Cup – the last major tournament to be staged in France.

• The only Croatian side to have played a UEFA game in Bordeaux are Hajduk Split, who lost 4-0 to Bordeaux in a 1982/83 UEFA Cup second round encounter.

EURO 2008 final highlights: Spain's golden night

EURO facts – Spain
• This is Spain's sixth consecutive EURO. They are bidding to triumph for the third time in succession, having become the first side to win two in a row at UEFA EURO 2012.

• Spain and Germany/West Germany are the most successful EURO sides having won three editions each.

• Spain have played France in two Bordeaux friendlies – a 4-0 win in 1922 and a 2-1 defeat in 1988.

• Spanish clubs have played five games at Bordeaux in UEFA competition with the record W1 D1 L3. Most recently, Osasuna drew 0-0 at the Stade Chaban-Delmas in a 2007/08 UEFA Cup round of 32 game.

Coach and player links
• Play together:
Mateo Kovačić and Luka Modrić (Croatia) & Sergio Ramos (Spain) – Real Madrid

Mario Mandžukić (Croatia) and Álvaro Morata (Spain) – Juventus

Ivan Rakitić (Croatia) & Jordi Alba, Sergio Busquets, Andrés Iniesta and Gerard Piqué (Spain) – Barcelona

• Have played together:
Mario Mandžukić (Croatia) & Juanfran and Koke (Spain) – Atlético Madrid, 2014–15

Mario Mandžukić (Croatia) and Thiago Alcántara (Spain) – Bayern München, 2013–14

Luka Modrić (Croatia) and Iker Casillas (Spain) – Real Madrid, 2012–15

Ivan Rakitić (Croatia) and Sergio Rico (Spain) – Sevilla, 2010–14

Ivan Rakitić (Croatia) and Pedro Rodríguez (Spain) – Barcelona 2014–15

Ivan Rakitić (Croatia) and Marc Bartra (Spain) – Barcelona 2014–16

• Croatia forward Duje Čop spent this season in Spain, on loan at Málaga from Dinamo Zagreb.