Luka Modric: Why Croatia star was rubbish in World Cup semi-final first half vs England

Luka Modric Croatia England World CupGETTY

Luka Modric endured a quiet first half in the World Cup semi-final

Modric was tipped to run the game in Moscow but the Real Madrid star laboured in midfield.

England stunned their opponents five minutes in when Kieran Trippier clipped home a wonderful free-kick.

The Three Lions kept Croatia largely quiet as they went in 1-0 at the break.

And Keown identified why Modric was so quiet in the first 45 minutes.

“England are so impressive with how they all know their jobs and are working to keep Luka Modric off the ball,” Keown said on the BBC’s radio coverage.

“He’s hardly had any touches so far and that’s because they have been set up so well.”

Luka Modric Croatia England World CupGETTY

Luka Modric was slammed by Martin Keown

Luka Modric Croatia England World CupGETTY

England were afforded plenty of space by Croatia in the first half

England are seeking to qualify for their first World Cup final since they won the competition way back in 1966.

They lost in the semi-finals back in 1990 when West Germany knocked the Three Lions out on penalties.

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Daily Express

Daily Express

The Daily Express is a daily national middle market tabloid newspaper in the United Kingdom. It is the flagship title of Express Newspapers, a subsidiary of Northern & Shell (which is wholly owned by Richard Desmond). It was first published as a broadsheet in 1900 by Sir Arthur Pearson. Its sister paper, the Sunday Express, was launched in 1918. As of December 2016, it had an average daily circulation of 391,626.