Croatia's Davor Suker Is Determined To Hold On To His World Cup Crown

Croatia's Davor Suker Is Determined To Hold On To His World Cup Crown

Post by bmarjanov.. » Fri, 05 Apr 2002 07:21:05

2 April 2002, Seoul - Tokyo

Suker aiming to shoot down "Golden Shoe" rivals


Since becoming the top goalscorer at the FIFA World Cup France 1998?, little
has been heard of Davor Suker. The Croatian striker spent two injury-plagued
years in England with Arsenal and then West Ham United before moving to
Germany to play for 1860 Munich. However Suker is determined to hold on to
his crown and repeat in Korea/Japan his 1998 performance.

"Im looking forward to defending my Golden Boot. I hope to be in form and
steer clear of injuries. At the age of 34 I have to take care with my
preparations, but Ive still got time to score some more goals. Why not in
the next World Cup?, said the Croatia striker talking to the official UEFA

The figures dont lie

Croatia and Suker arrived in France in silence, but left to loud applause
after a mixture of individual sacrifice, tactical discipline and especially
goals led them to third place in the competition, with successes over
Romania, Holland and Germany on the way.

Suker struck seven times for the team and ended up top scorer in the
tournament, with the defences of Japan, Jamaica, Romania, Germany, France and
Holland all suffering on the way. Now playing for 1860 Munich in Germany,
after spells with Seville and Real Madrid, the Croat still has what it takes
to motivate himself.

Important to get a good start

Suker also stressed the importance of getting a good result in the first game
against Mexico. "The first match is crucial. We want those three points and I
want to score. Were in a tough group: Italy are favourities, but were not
short on strength, youth, talent or experience, he said.

On this point, it was doubtful whether the football world took sufficient note
after Croatias victory over Jamaica in their opening fixture in France. The
3-1 win in that game set them on the way to a fantastic campaign and even
allowed them the luxury of losing in the final group game against Argentina
without any risk of being eliminated.

The eternal favourites

Sukers choice of favourites for the trophy is hardly original. "France,
Italy, England, Brazil, Argentina and Germany are all good sides. As for
Croatia, "weve got a good team for the future, although its always tough to
play big matches in important tournaments like this. Playing in Asia will be
a new experience for us.

A few days earlier, Sukers team mate, Robert Prosinecki, claimed that Croatia
still have the same fire as the team that finished third in France. As for
Suker, the star striker is aiming to prove his famous left foot is still on
fire in Korea and Japan.

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