Rakitic: World fell in love with Croatia

Barcelona midfielder Ivan Rakitic has reflected on Croatia’s run to the World Cup final this year: “Playing with the national team is something else.”

The 30-year-old was influential in his nation’s successful tournament as they reached their first ever international final before succumbing to a 4-2 loss to France.

“The most beautiful thing was to make the entire world fall in love, rather than winning a thousand matches,” Rakitic told an interview with Diario Sport.

“You learn to live together with the pressure that comes with these tournaments and also there is the motivation: with all the respect in the world, playing with the national team is something else, especially if it is a country as small as Croatia and with the limited possibilities we have.”

The midfielder has netted 15 goals in a total of 99 caps for his nation.

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