lThe extension of Uki Modric’s contract until 2023 poses a number of new challenges for the Croatian, who is already a legendary figure. RealMadrid.
His title aside (20 in 10 years, including five Champions League trophies), Modric’s impact on fans is impossible to quantify. Despite some initial hesitations, the Croatian constantly made himself felt on the field and in the dressing room, where he became one of the leaders of the team.
His influence is so recognized by everyone associated with the club that his recent contract extension shows that he remains committed.
Puskas’ record is approaching
Modric wants to retire at Madrid and he is close to it given his new contract expires on June 30, 2023 at the age of 37 years, nine months and 21 days. So he will surpass such legendary names as Miguel Angel and Francisco Gentostill lagging behind Ferenc Puskas, Francisco Buyo, Jerzy Dudek and Alfredo Di Stefano.
The Hungarian remains the club’s oldest player at 38 years and 233 days old. This means that if Modric does the same as last season (45 games and 3,500 minutes played) in 2022/23, there is a good chance that he can pass Puskas if he agrees to stay.
Modric’s new contract also means he will play at the refurbished Santiago Bernabéu stadium. Although the work is expected to be completed at the end of the year, it is currently behind schedule.
Horvath was one of the players who remained enthusiastic about the planned work, and he made it clear that he did not want to miss the game at the stadium once it was ready to open.
Modric’s priority was to keep playing, and he managed to do so as the reigning Champions League winners. This will certainly give him confidence as he prepares for the World Championships in Qatar in November and December this year.
Croatia will head into the tournament after finishing second to France in 2018 and they should be a threat again.
Sixth Champions League title
Another challenge for Modric is to see if he can win another Champions League trophy with the Creamy. He is already in a select group along with several teammates and Cristiano Ronaldo, who has won it five times, but Gento’s record of six is now at arm’s length.
Madrid will bring such Antonio Rudiger and Aurélien Chuameni to help with that, while another signing or two is expected, meaning Los Blancos will once again be in contention for the most coveted trophy in European club football.