rediff.com

NewsApp (Free)

Read news as it happens
Download NewsApp

Available on  

Rediff News  All News 
Rediff.com  » Sports » Luka Modric: From war-ravaged Zadar to Player of Year

Luka Modric: From war-ravaged Zadar to Player of Year

Last updated on: September 25, 2018 10:41 IST

Luka Modric addresses the guests after winning the Best Men's Player award Royal Festival Hall in London on Monday

IMAGE: Luka Modric addresses the guests after winning the Best Men's Player award Royal Festival Hall in London on Monday. Photograph: John Sibley/Action Images via Reuters

From practising football in empty parking lots in Zadar, Croatia, amidst the sounds of grenades going off in the background, to leading Croatia to the FIFA World Cup final in July this year, to winning the FIFA Player of the Year, Luka Modric has come a long way.

 

The Modric family took refuge in a hotel near Zadar in 1991 when the war that followed the breakup of former Yugoslavia started and after Luka’s grandfather was killed by Serb militia.

And from there, Modric began to build a successful soccer career with Real Madrid.

A former refugee in his own homeland, Modric is now a household name, rallying the Real Madrid team-mates from mid-field week in and week out.

Those war-ravaged years have seen the plucky Croatia captain climb the rungs of success over time.

The following is a factbox on Croatia and Real Madrid midfielder Luka Modric, who won the Best FIFA Men's Player award for 2018 on Monday.

Real Madrid's Luka Modric celebrates with his 2017/18 UEFA Men's Player of the Year award at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on September 1 

IMAGE: Real Madrid's Luka Modric and wife Vanja Bosnic arrive on the Green Carpet with their children Ivano Modric and Ema Modric ahead of The Best FIFA Football Awards at Royal Festival Hall in London on Monday. Photograph: Julian Finney/Getty Images

1985: Born in Zadar, Croatia on September 9

1996: Began to play in NK Zadar's youth teams

2002: Joined Dinamo Zagreb

2006: Made his full international debut for Croatia in a friendly match against Argentina.

2008: Joined Tottenham Hotspur for a fee of 16.5 million pounds ($21.64 million)

2012: Joined Real Madrid for a reported 30 million pound fee.

Honours:

Luka Modrid with the UEFA Player of the Year Award on September 1

IMAGE: Real Madrid's Luka Modric celebrates with his 2017/18 UEFA Men's Player of the Year award at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on September 1. Photograph: Denis Doyle/Getty Images

Club: With Dinamo Zagreb: Croatian champion: 2006, 2007, 2008

With Real Madrid: La Liga title 2017; Champions League: 2014, 2016, 2017, 2018; Copa del Rey: 2014

Major individual awards:

Croatian Footballer of the Year: 2007, 2008, 2011, 2014, 2016, 2017

FIFA World Cup Golden Ball: 2018

UEFA Men's Player of the Year: 2017-18

Best FIFA Men's Player: 2018

AGENCIES