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Why is Croatia so good at penalty shootouts?


The success of the Croatian national soccer team cannot be called accidental, as its leaders have been playing in the strongest European championships and clubs for many years. Here it is more interesting the fact of successful games in the World Cup, as they managed to reach the semifinals at least three times, while at the Euros the statistics are not so pleasant. In addition to the presence of famous players, there is another interesting feature – the successful statistics of penalty kicks. After looking at the last football results of the team, it turns out that it almost never concedes anyone in the penalty shootout. And this is proof not only of skill, but also of iron stamina.

Since 2008, Croatia has failed to go to extra time only once in all major tournaments. And five times the team has had to take a penalty kick to determine the winner. The loss was in 2008 at the Euros, and there has been some magic ever since. There have already been several examples of how, in a knowingly lost match, the team was able to reach the penalty shootout and beat the favorite. The most recent striking example for 2022 is the victory over Brazil. There can be no doubt that such results from the Croats at major football tournaments will continue, since there are some regularities. Especially since the team has a lot of promising players.

Reasons for Croatia’s good penalty shootout series

Croatia’s winning streak in the penalty shootout begins in 2018, and as of 2023, it is still an unbeaten record with four consecutive penalty shootout victories over their opponents. When it comes to the total number of World Cup penalty shootout victories, Argentina has the upper hand. It could do it five times. And you can watch live sports football on a progressive platform and watch your favorites.

If we analyze the Croatian game, we can draw the following conclusions:

  1. Modrić shoots penalties extremely confidently, not reacting to what the opponent’s goalkeeper is doing. The only problem was in the match against Denmark at the 2018 World Cup.
  2. It is not the team captain who finishes the series, but another player. In 2018, it was always Ivan Rakitic. It was the same in 2022, when Modrić hit one of the first shots.
  3. Players practice these kicks at every practice and use them as an additional weapon.

Watching live football performed by the Croatian national team, you realize that their strength lies in their sports mentality. The players of this national team almost always cope with the moral pressure better than the opponent, especially if they initially have to compete against the clear favorites, as was the case in the 2022 World Cup match against Brazil. It is also quite important for the first player to score a goal in a confident style, so that the rest of the partners will cheer up as well.

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