Zlatko Dalic warns Croatia against getting 'carried away by euphoria' at World Cup

Former Al Ain manager says there is still plenty to do to reach the knockout stages after the dominant win over Canada

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Zlatko Dalic has reminded his Croatia side there remains much to do to qualify for the World Cup knockout stages, despite the dominant 4-1 victory against Canada on Sunday night.

The 2018 runners-up, who drew their opening Group F match with Morocco, clicked into gear at Khalifa International Stadium, rebounding from a first-minute concession to cruise to the three points.

The win moved Croatia top of the standings – Morocco sit second on the same points – and means a draw against Belgium in the group finale on Thursday would be enough to see them into the last 16.

However, former Al Ain manager Dalic told reporters: "We made a small step here, but we are far from our ultimate goal ... we must not accept the option of having only one point at the end the match with Belgium. We should not be carried away by euphoria."

Having gone behind on Sunday to Alphonso Davies’ 67-second goal – the second fastest in World Cup history – Croatia rallied. Andrej Kramaric scored twice, either side of a neat finish by Marko Livaja, while substitute Lovro Majer rolled home in injury-time.

Yet Dalic recognises the threat posed by Belgium, the world’s No2-ranked side, who will have been stung by Sunday’s surprise 2-0 defeat to Morocco.

"This is a World Cup, there are no easy games,” Dalic said. “It will be a difficult game, Belgium need a win. But we will also aim for a win.”

Updated: November 28, 2022, 11:07 AM