The Croation captain hasn’t always had the plaudits and applause that he gets now which are inarguably deserved. After showing his brilliance at Spurs for 4 years and before that at Dinamo Zagreb, Modric got his career-defining transfer to Real Madrid in August of 2012 for a then-hefty fee of £30 million. In the season to come, he would not glitter and shine as the stars that were on the field playing with him.

Getting used to the Spanish league was a tedious job for him in his first season. He was well versed in the tough nature of the English game but he was not in the slick passing of the Spanish. Though he possessed the required skills he was still downplayed by the Spanish media. Mainly the fanatic Real Madrid support who have not spared a player like Cristiano Ronaldo. After a season of mainly downs, Marca put out a poll in which he was branded as the worst signing of the season in Spain with 32.2 percent votes. Not only that but media all over started seeing him in the same sense.

How wrong were they?

In the years since Luka Modric has not only become one of the best midfielders in Real Madrid history but he has become one of the greatest midfielders of all time. His performances in this edition of the FIFA World Cup have spurred the talks of him being in contention for the Ballon d’Or and of course the Golden Ball at the tournament. Not ever in his wildest dreams, a boy honing his craft during the Independence struggle of his country where his Grandfather was executed would have thought of making it to professional football. Let alone being the most influential player in the past half-decade for club and country.

Football has seen many greats in modern midfield such as Pirlo, Xavi, Iniesta, Scholes and now there is a new name to be taken in the same breath. That of Luka Modric, the boy who defied atrocity and became a man, more importantly, the best midfielder of his generation.


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