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Breadth of Croatian talent pleases Bilić

Slaven Bilić was satisfied after Croatia's draw against Scotland at Hampden Park, yet returning forward Ivan Klasnić felt "we didn't make the most of our chances".

Slaven Bilić saw "a lot of positives" in Croatia's performance
Slaven Bilić saw "a lot of positives" in Croatia's performance ©Getty Images

Slaven Bilić was satisfied with Croatia's 1-1 draw in Scotland although forward Ivan Klasnić felt his side "didn't make the most of our chances" at Hampden Park.

Klasnić criticism
In Croatia's first game since Eduardo da Silva was ruled out for UEFA EURO 2008™ with a broken leg, Klasnić returned to international action for the first time in almost 18 months following two kidney transplant operations. The Werder Bremen man was paired with Igor Budan up front, and concluded: "We dominated but in the end we didn't make the most of our chances. I can't be completely happy with this result. We played better than Scotland, but after we scored the first goal, we slowed down a little bit."

'A competitive match'
Croatia took an early lead through Niko Kranjčar, but Scotland were on level terms by half-time thanks to a Kenny Miller goal. The UEFA EURO 2008™ contenders showed plenty of composure on the ball, and produced some dangerous moves but were unable to re-establish their lead, though Bilić insists that had nothing to do with the lack of Eduardo. Having scored ten of Croatia's 28 goals in qualifying, many feared that his absence would be a severe brake on the national team's ambition, yet the coach was impressed with the depth of talent in Glasgow. "The players who came on as substitutes brought a lot of positives to our play. Both forwards [Klasnić and Budan], Jerko Leko and Ognjen Vukojević played well. It's nice to see we have strength in depth. On the bench we have players who can maintain and raise our tempo, and that's a great thing to know."

Burley glad
In his first game as Scotland manager, George Burley had to do without talismanic captain Barry Ferguson, but was happy enough with the outcome, saying: It was a good performance against a top-quality side. As a unit, we worked hard and it was very much a team performance. It was a competitive friendly and the boys all gave it 100 per cent. We saw the spirit and togetherness of the side and we need to keep that going and fine tune it."