Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Dalic slams Herdman after Croatia knock Canada out of World Cup

Dalic slams Herdman after Croatia knock Canada out of World Cup

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Canada coach John Herdman reacts on the touchline during their Qatar 2022 World Cup Group F match with Croatia at the Khalifa International Stadium on November 27. AFP

Dalic slams Herdman after Croatia knock Canada out of World Cup

Croatia coach Zlatko Dalic said John Herdman needs to "learn some things" after accusing the Canada boss of ignoring him following his side's 4-1 victory in the World Cup grudge match on Sunday.

Dalic had claimed Herdman lacked respect earlier this week following the Canadian coach's profane attempt to inspire his team after their loss to Belgium in their group opener.

In a television interview, Herdman told his players: "You belong here. And we're going to go and eff Croatia."

Responding to Herdman's rant, Croatia's 24 Sata tabloid ran a full-page photo of a naked man below the Canada manager's superimposed head, with maple leaf flags over his mouth and private parts and a headline that translated as "You have the mouth, but do you have the balls as well?"

The Croatians let their football do the talking as Andrej Kramaric's double and goals from Marko Livaja and Lovro Majer sent them to the top of Group F and condemned Canada to an early exit.

But Dalic was still agitated by the row at his post-match press conference as he suggested Herdman deliberately snubbed the traditional handshake at the final whistle.

"I went on the pitch to see my players. I did not see the other head coach. Whether I lose or win, I always see the other coach. He was not there and that's his way of doing things," Dalic said.

"He's obviously mad. He is a good coach. He is a quality professional. It will take some time for him to learn some things."

Asked if he thought he made a mistake with his rant following the Belgium match, Herdman was initially defiant, telling reporters: "Not in the first 20 minutes [of the Croatia game], no.

"They might be celebrating now, and that is their right, they got the goals, but we didn't give them an easy night."

But the Englishman eventually conceded he would learn from the controversy, saying: "I could have been a little more composed coming out of the huddle. That is my learning. I will take that on the chin."

'Power and quality'

Dalic was relieved to see Croatia respond to the shock of Alphonso Davies's second-minute opener at the Khalifa International Stadium.

The 2018 runners-up will advance to the last 16 if they avoid defeat in their final group game against Belgium on Thursday.

"In the first minutes they scored but we managed to fight and stabilise ourselves," Dalic said.

"We got back on our feet. This makes me proud. Croatia once again demonstrated power and quality. We have to make it to the next stage. That is our ultimate goal."

Davies's goal was Canada's first ever at a World Cup after four previous scoreless defeats.

Although they were unable to end that run of losses, Herdman took heart from their spirited performances.

"In terms of the team mentality, we showed little Canada can compete with the best in the world," he said.

"I'm proud of what they achieved tonight. They made some history for our country.

"The goal was a very special moment to feel that, on this stage against this type of team."


  • Research key to Kanitha’s rep for expertise

    Sok Kanitha is used to weighing in on controversial issues using a confident approach that signals expertise and authority, and a recent video she made was no exception. Her “Episode 342: The History of NATO” video went live on January 16, 2023 and immediately shot to 30,000 likes and 3,500

  • Cambodia maintains 'Kun Khmer' stance despite Thailand’s boycott threat

    Cambodia has taken the position that it will use the term "Kun Khmer" to refer to the sport of kickboxing at the upcoming Southeast Asian (SEA) Games, and has removed the term Muay from all references to the sport. Despite strong reactions from the Thai

  • Knockout! Kun Khmer replaces ‘Muay’ for Phnom Penh Games

    Cambodia has decided to officially remove the word Muay from the programme of the 32nd Southeast Asian (SEA) Games 2023 in May. “Kun Khmer” will instead be used to represent the Southeast Asian sport of kickboxing, in accordance with the wishes of the Cambodian people. Vath

  • Artificial insemination takes herd from 7 to 700

    Some farms breed local cows or even import bulls from a broad for the purpose of breeding heavier livestock for meat production. One Tbong Khnum farmer has found a more efficient way. Hout Leang employs artificial insemination to fertilise local cows. Thanks to imported “straws”

  • New int’l airport nearly half complete as travel industry returns to life

    Construction of a new airport that is slated to serve the capital has passed the 43 per cent completion mark, raising prospects for a proper recovery in the civil aviation and tourism sectors as international travellers return to the Kingdom in increasingly large numbers. The figure

  • Chinese group tours return to Cambodia starting Feb 6

    Cambodia is among 20 countries selected by Beijing for a pilot programme allowing travel agencies to provide international group tours as well as flight and hotel packages to Chinese citizens, following a three-year ban. As the days tick down until the programme kicks off on February 6,