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This is the Modric way

A new-look hotspur magazine is out now, and the main interview this month is our Croatian international star Luka Modric.

A new-look hotspur magazine is out now, and the main interview this month is our Croatian international star Luka Modric.

The summer signing gives his most in-depth interview yet since arriving at The Lane from Dinamo Zagreb.

Luka tells readers about the struggles he faced growing up in his war-torn homeland, in which he had to flee his birth-place and take refuge in a hotel.

"I cannot even begin to put into words what happened back in my homeland," he says. "Growing up was very difficult at times, but surviving something like that makes you view life very clearly."

Having overcome these challenges, Luka achieved the dream of signing for one of Croatia's biggest clubs, Dinamo, as a 17-year-old in 2002.

But his first experience of senior football came during a loan spell with Zrinjski Mostar in the Bosnian leagues.

Luka Modric

As he describes: "You might say that my first taste of professional competitive football was pretty crazy!

"The style of football over there is like nothing I had experienced before, with most of the players extremely tough, especially in matches played away from home. They would not hesitate in kicking and punching you either as an attempt to win possession, or in simply to try to scare and intimidate.

"It was so widespread that it got to the stage that the referees would do nothing about it, so it was obviously a rude awakening to competitive football for me.

"But despite the treatment I received, and although the quality of the league was maybe not so great, the whole experience was very good for me."

Once returning to his parent club, he soon became the player we know today, progressing into the Croatian national side and earning a move to Spurs on the back of internationally-renowned performances.

As a result, he has earned comparisons not only to Croatian legends such as Robert Prosinecki and Zvonimir Boban, but also greats like Johan Cruyff.

"When you are compared to players of this stature it is very flattering, and a great honour, particularly when people begin to call you things like the ‘Croatian Cruyff'.

"But I am honest and realistic, and I know that I'll need to play at the top of my game for a long period of time to really start to think of myself in that kind of company."

But the only place to read the interview in full is in this month's new-look hotspur magazine.

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