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    Dejan Lovren explains how you stop Lionel Messi


    Dejan Lovren has made it very clear that while his Croatia side were deeply respectful of Lionel Messi, they knew he could be stopped, and set out to get the exact result they did in that respect.

    Messi cut a lost figure, and was certainly frustrated, yet it seemed that Croatia expected that – and given Messi is the player everyone considers to be one of the greatest, if not the greatest player of all time, it might come as a bit of a shock that they were so confident.

    The Telegraph report he said: “No, of course we respect Messi, because he’s the greatest player in the world, but he’s also stoppable. But not against one player.

    “We defended like a team and this is how we did it. Together. You saw it. He didn’t have many chances, and it was, I would say, brilliant defending.”

    Lionel Messi Argentina World Cup

    NIZHNY NOVGOROD, RUSSIA – JUNE 21: Lionel Messi of Argentina reacts during the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia group D match between Argentina and Croatia at Nizhny Novgorod Stadium on June 21, 2018 in Nizhny Novgorod, Russia. (Photo by Gabriel Rossi/Getty Images)


    The key thing for Croatia at the minute seems to be their team spirit, and while they have a world class player in Luka Modric, it seems that Rakitic, Lovren and Perisic are all stepping up for their nation and providing key performances as well.

    Again, it’s the emphasis on ‘believing’ they can win, win the game, win the group and even the World Cup – and Lovren made sure that was clear when he spoke with the media.

    “I believed, from the beginning, that we could do it. When we are really like a defending bloc, together, they didn’t have big opportunities to be honest.

    “We had a couple of them, [Mario] Mandzukic and then [Ivan] Perisic, we had a couple of chances and, like I said, when we defend together, like a team, we will always have our chances.”

    See also: Dejan Lovren makes massive claim about Croatia’s World Cup chances

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