I’m sure I heard the sound of ‘Last Dance’ 5 years ago. But even now, Luka Modric is a midfielder who plays soccer better than anyone else.
Real Madrid won 1-0 against Liverpool in the second leg of the round of 16 of the 2022-23 season European Football Federation (UEFA) Champions League (UCL) held at the Santiago Bernabeu in Madrid, Spain at 5 am (Korean time) on the 16th. After defeating their opponents 6-2 on aggregate in the first and second games, Real succeeded in advancing to the quarterfinals comfortably.
Unexpectedly, both teams played aggressively. Liverpool naturally went on the attack as they needed at least three goals to turn the game around. Real could have played defensively by pulling their players back, but instead used counter-attacks, which they do best, to launch a number of threatening attacks.
In the end, Real laughed in the second match as well. In the 34th minute of the second half, Karim Benzema, who received a pass from Vinicius Junior, put the ball into the goal to decide the game. It was a moment that stood out for Vinicius’ tenacity in passing the ball to his teammate until the end and Benzema’s concentration that did not miss it. 메이저놀이터
Modric’s performance was also great. Modric, who formed the midfield along with Eduardo Camavinga and Toni Kroos, completely dominated the midfield with a formidable pass success rate of 96% (51 out of 53 passes) while roaming the ground for 82 minutes. In the 18th minute of the second half, after an aerial lift to neutralize Trent Alexander-Arnold, he also sent an accurate cross to the head of Federico Valverde in the center.
Five years ago, Modric’s performance was evaluated as ‘last dance’. Modric, who defeated Liverpool 3-1 at the time, completed Real’s third straight UCL title, and led Croatia’s World Cup finals, reached the peak of his career by winning the Ballon d’Or.
No one could have predicted that peak would last until 2023. The 37-year-old Modric was a key player in Real Madrid’s 14th Champions League win over Liverpool last season, and was a regular at the World Cup in Qatar, leading Croatia to a third-place finish.
And on this day, he led Real’s UCL strength with his active performance. His performance was such that he received a standing ovation from the Liverpool fans. As coach Carlo Ancelotti said, “Modric plays because he deserves to play, not because of what they have done,” Modric is still an indispensable midfielder for Real Madrid.