Stories about Croatia

Controversies, surprises and uplifting moments – 2018 was the year of football

Football is rightly lauded as the king of sports and 2018 was another year where this sport proved why it is held in such a high regard. Since this was also a FIFA World Cup year, there were already major expectations attached with the sport, but like every year, football managed to exceed these expectations and then some. So without further ado, let’s have a look at some of the moments which helped consolidate football’s position right at the top during this past one year. Croatia losing the FIFA 2018 After 63 matches and 163 goals, Croatia and France were the last two ...

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From Fatima Jinnah to Nasira Iqbal: Can Pakistan make the choice 53 years later?

The first woman to run for Pakistan’s presidential elections did so in 1965, and it was Fatima Jinnah versus Ayub Khan. The latter swept the elections and was sworn in as president. That was 53 years ago. Now, 53 years later, is Pakistan ready to make history and elect the first woman president of the country? Recently, social media was rife with speculation that Justice (retd) Nasira Iqbal, a Pakistani jurist and law professor who served as a justice of the Lahore High Court (LHC) for eight years until 2002, was being considered for the office of the President of Pakistan. ...

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Best World Cup ever: VAR controversies, major mishaps, outstanding goals and a fitting finale

According to a vast majority of people, this might just have been the best FIFA World Cup ever. And probably for one of the really rare moments in my life, I wouldn’t be a total cynic and would align myself with the popular opinion. Football’s showpiece event in Russia had it all. It had video assistant referee (VAR) controversies, major upsets, memorable contests, and bucket loads of goals; more per game than in three of the last four tournaments. In fact, if you were trying to create a perfect month-long sporting spectacle in a lab somewhere, an outcome like ...

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FIFA World Cup Final: The mind says France, but the heart wants Croatia

FIFA World Cup in France, way back in 1998, might not be my first recollection of football’s biggest event, but it surely is the most vivid one. Les Bleus came out victorious in the final against Brazil on their home soil, winning their first FIFA World Cup trophy. Majority of the people would remember this particular final because of Zinedine Zidane’s brace in the final against the Canaries at the Stade de France. There is also a small chance that they might remember it for (original) Ronaldo Luís Nazário de Lima’s bizarre omission and then his subsequent re-instatement 45 minutes before ...

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Why Belgium and England will win the 2018 FIFA World Cup semi-finals

The 2018 FIFA World Cup has reached a fascinating stage. After a dramatic Round of 16, which saw two of this generation’s greatest players, Portugal’s Cristiano Ronaldo and Argentina’s Lionel Messi, exiting the tournament on the same day, the quarter finals treated us to some memorable encounters, with England and France – both one-time champions – breezing past their opponents Sweden and Uruguay respectively. Belgium beat heavy tournament-favourites Brazil, courtesy of a classic display of quick counterattacking football, while Croatia defeated a spirited Russian side on penalties. Neither Belgium nor Croatia have ever won the World Cup. The semi-final line-up ...

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#FIFAWorldCup18: The only thing that worked for Argentina was Nigeria’s bad luck

This is a clipping of a supposed interview, attributed to Pelé, going viral on social media these days. It goes as follows: Interviewer: "Do you think Brazil's 1970 team can beat today's Argentina?" Pelé: "Yes." Interviewer: "By how much?" Pelé: "1-0" Interviewer: “That's it?" Pelé: "Well, most of us are over 75 years old now." 😂😂😂 pic.twitter.com/mThA6bDQ8A — World Cup (@EPLBible) June 25, 2018 This citation, to the best of my knowledge, is a complete fabrication. But the funny part is that if you analyse Argentina’s performances over the course of FIFA World Cup 2018, you would completely understand where the Brazilian legend would be coming from, if ...

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For these 10 players, the 2018 FIFA World Cup could be their last shot at redemption

There are superstars and there are rising stars. There are seasoned veterans and there are hidden gems. Then there are those looking for a final chance at reviving their stagnating careers. The World Cup is a showcase for everyone and anyone but for some players, it is more about one last shot at salvaging their careers than aiming for the World Cup glory. But then again, things can go either way and players can find their careers sinking, if they exhibit poor performance in this tournament. In this list, let’s look at 10 players for whom this World Cup could ...

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A green passport in my hand and wanderlust in my heart

Imagine this: a Pakistani female, a backpack, and a trip across Europe. As a child, I saw the Bosnian war unfold. I played with the Bosnian refugees in the infamous Japanese park in Islamabad. I was infatuated by the country and its people, yet it always remained a sort of enigma for me. Years later, I am back in Europe and ready to backpack through Bosnia. The city of Mostar. I had saved money and decided that the Balkans would be my last stop before heading home. There are no direct flights into Bosnia, so I had to land ...

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The year of Cristiano Ronaldo; Champion of Europe for both club and country

Unanticipated, unpredictable and unexpected are a few of many analogous adjectives that have been used to describe the recently concluded football spectacle, Euro 2016. It was indeed a tournament which saw several unheralded outcomes: – The spirited Icelandic ‘sons’ stomped over a perplexed and dumbfounded English 11 in the round-of-16. Iceland celebrates a goal during Euro 2016.Photo: Twitter England suffered 2-1 upset loss to Iceland in Euro 2016 round.Photo: Headline News – A united Welsh outfit sailed through to the semi-finals in what was their first major tournament since the 1958 World Cup in Sweden. [caption ...

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Good vs evil: Where does America stand?

Having read through the 500-odd page US Senate report on CIA torture and all of its gory details, I can understand why the CIA, Pentagon and White House didn’t want this report to come out. Remembering the international outcry over the pictures that were leaked from Abu Ghraib and Bagram, the US intelligence services knew the powder keg that they were hiding from the world. They knew what they had done were crimes against humanity and no amount of verbal discourse would make this acceptable, tolerable or forgivable. There are two parts of this discourse that are disturbing to me as a human being. First, ...

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