Published: Thu, July 12, 2018
Sports | By Jonathan Ford

Dejan Lovren Says He's One Of The Best Defenders In The World

Dejan Lovren Says He's One Of The Best Defenders In The World

Croatia and Liverpool centre-back Dejan Lovren claims that he should be regarded as one of the best defenders in world football having reached the World Cup final.

Speaking to BeIN SPORTS, he said: "I heard people saying I had a hard season but I don't agree with that".

With a population of 4.3 million and a history of struggle, it's easy to see why.

This is also the first time the Balkan nation has made the final - the furthest they had advanced previously was in France in 1998, when a Davor Suker-inspired side were knocked out by the hosts in the last four. Lovren and star midfielder Luka Modric were refugees as children.

And the Liverpool defender has praised Croatian parents for "making good love" and giving the small country several sports stars. "This is what I wanted, this is why I'm proud and I deserve this." added Lovren.

"We have the chance to do something better, and hopefully we can do it on Sunday".

"It's unbelievable how many talents we have in sport, basketball, handball, water polo, tennis, for sure". We beat our record from 20 years ago.

"After all we went through, we deserve to be here", he said.

"This feels incredible, especially after everything that was said about us before the game".

Most of all, Croatia is an export market for quality footballers, with a squad boasting stars for Real Madrid, Barcelona and Juventus.

Lovren also called for his national team captain Luka Modric to be crowned the 2018 Ballon d'Or victor after leading the country to their first ever World Cup final.

"If somebody told me at the start of the season that I would be in two of the biggest finals in the world I would have signed straight away". With a very young team they did a brilliant job.

"I was only nine. We showed our character, we showed that we deserved to be in the final and people should respect us", he said.

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