Preview: A look ahead to Spurs’ European challenge against Dinamo Zagreb

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Image: SpursWeb

After defeating Austrian side, Wolfsberger in the Round of 32, Tottenham were drawn against Croatian giants Dinamo Zagreb in the Europa League.

Recent form – 

Zagreb currently sit at the top of Prva Hrvatska Nogometna Liga having won sixteen games, drawn three and lost three.

Dinamo went undefeated in the group stages and won Group K, only conceding one goal in the process. They also faced Wolfsburger, the side Spurs beat to progress to the Round of 16.

In their two meetings, Dinamo came on top both times winning 1-0 at home and 3-0 in Austria. In the Round of 32, they took on Krasnodar, beating them 3-2 away and 1-0 at home. 

In the 19/20 season, they missed out on progressing into the last 16 of the Champions League by finishing bottom of their group which included Manchester City, Atalanta and Shakhtar Donetsk. 

Home stadium – 

They play their home games at Stadion Maksimir in Zagreb which has a healthy capacity of 35,981 and was last renovated in 2011. The travel length for the Spurs players is about 2 hours and 15 minutes

Key players – 

This won’t be a walk in the park for Spurs as Zagreb have some eyecatching players that include Josko Gvardiol, Lovro Majer and Mislav Orsic. 

Gvardiol is a 6ft 1 young and talented centre back who is joining RB Leipzig at the end of the season in a deal worth 14 million Euros (transfermarkt). A good passer, dribbler and an aerial threat, he is one to look out for. 

Lovro Majer is a 23-year-old Croatian midfielder who has already registered five goal contributions in the Europa League this season – a player Spurs will need to keep quiet due to his playmaking ability. (TransferMarkt)

Mislav Orsic is one who really could cause our defence some issues. He has scored 10 goals and registered 3 assists in the NHL this season (TransferMarkt). He is absolutely rapid which could cause issues to players such as Eric Dier and Toby Alderweireld. 

The manager – 

The manager, Zoran Mamić, has been in charge of Dinamo since July 2020, rejoining them after leaving for 4 years while managing in the UAE. He has won the Croatian first division four times with Zagreb, while also winning the Croatian Cup twice (Wikipedia).

He likes to play out from the back, starting from the goalkeeper, and possesses confident defenders who aren’t shy of receiving the ball.

They like to play on the front foot, an attacking style shown by the fact they’ve scored 55 goals already in the NHL this season which is the most in the division. 

Definitely an exciting tie but not one for Spurs fans to take lightly.

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