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Luka Modric gets emotional after breaking Croatia record

Luka Modric, Croatia
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Modric couldn’t hold back his tears as his Croatia teammates gave him a standing ovation for his historic landmark.

Luka Modric became Croatia’s most capped player in history on Saturday night in a World Cup qualifier against Cyprus.

The Real Madrid playmaker played the full 90 minutes to help the Vatreni bag a crucial 1-0 win. Mario Pasalic’s match-winning goal moved the team up to third place in Group J, only three points adrift of leaders Russia.

But as welcome as the victory was, the night belonged to Modric.

The ageless 35-year-old broke Darijo Srna’s record of 134 caps for Croatia by making his 135th appearance at international level on Saturday.

The Croatian Football Federation has since uploaded videos of the squad giving Modric a standing ovation and presenting him with a special cake, leaving the 2018 Ballon d’Or winner feeling emotional.

“I enjoy what I do,” Modric told reporters in a post-match conference.

“It’s not a cliche. Playing for my national team is pride and honor, especially when you’re a captain. It’s love for the Croatian jersey, my energy comes from it.

“I rarely show emotions, but last night they said a lot about the love with which I take to the national team.”

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Modric and Croatia have one last World Cup qualifier against Malta coming up on Tuesday before the international break ends.