Turkey boss Fatih Terim demanded better from star men Arda Turan and Hakan Calhanoglu after his team slipped to a limp opening 1-0 defeat to Croatia at Euro 2016.
Luka Modric spectacularly settled the Group D encounter four minutes before half-time at the Parc des Princes and Ante Cacic’s men should have increased their margin of victory as they dominated much of the second period.
Terim’s decision at the interval to move captain Turan from the left to right flank and Calhanoglu into a central attacking midfield role could not rouse his side and the former was substituted after 65 minutes – unable to shake off the malaise of his debut season at Barcelona.
“These are important players,” the veteran tactician said at his post-match news conference.
“We rely on their performance but, as you said, they couldn’t deliver enough. We will need them but this happens.
“[Selcuk] Inan, [Ozan] Tufan – they need to deliver more too. I have high expectations from them. If they deliver enough we will make some good results.”
Terim denied the defeat was due to an incorrect approach, despite Turan and Calhanoglu failing to make an impression on a more even first half, but he was frustrated by how his team faded when a rally in the closing stages was the order of the day.
“The Turkish national team has a way of playing, has a certain formation and certain tactics, has a certain game philosophy,” he explained.
“There was nothing surprising for me but I didn’t expect us to drop so much in the second half.
“I thought that we would have more possession. In the first half it was a balanced game. We can say we couldn’t produce enough up front and in the second half we had some defensive problems.
“The lessons we can get from this game is we shouldn’t lose the ball in an easy way and we should run and fight more.”
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