Luka Modric has been announced as the new captain of Croatia by manager Ante Cacic, following the retirement of Shakhtar Donetsk full-back Darjo Srna.
Modric, 30, will take over as skipper against Turkey on September 5 in Croatia's first qualifier for the 2018 World Cup, with Srna retiring on 134 caps as Croatia's most-capped player of all time.
That match against Turkey is one in which Modric will have to lead out his team into an empty stadium, after FIFA ordered Croatia to play their next two qualifying games in front of no supporters due to repeated fascist chanting. Both Cacic and Modric believe this should have no effect, however.
"Modric will be our new captain. We have the role of the favourite [against Turkey] and we will do everything to justify it," said Cacic.
"I believe we will not be hampered by the fact that we are playing without fans against both Turkey and Iceland."
"It is a great honour to be the new Croatia captain. The fact that we are playing in front of empty stands should not be an excuse. We want a victory and a successful start," said Real Madrid midfielder Modric.
Croatia will be looking to get off to a positive start in qualifying, following a disappointing Euro 2016 where they promised so much but were knocked out in the last-16 stage by Portugal.
Group I consists of Croatia, Turkey, Iceland, Finland, Kosovo and Ukraine.
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