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Northern Ireland lose home record to Croatia in 3-0 defeat

Andrej Kramaric fires in Croatia's third goal. Credit: PA

Northern Ireland rounded off their incredible 2016 on a losing note as a depleted Croatia became the first visiting side to win at Windsor Park in three years.

Since Cristiano Ronaldo scored a hat-trick in a 4-2 win for Portugal, Michael O'Neill's men had recorded eight wins and two draws in their previous 10 fixtures in Belfast, but they were undone by a Croatian team missing Luka Modric, Ivan Rakitic and Dejan Lovren among others.

Mario Mandzukic, the most high profile player in the visitors' ranks, opened the scoring by bundling home early on before Duje Cop finished from a corner and ex-Leicester striker Andrej Kramaric fired into the top corner in a 3-0 success.

FIFA fines Croatia over fans' behaviour

Croatia fans. Credit: PA

The Croatian federation has been fined 50,000 Swiss francs by FIFA for the "inappropriate behaviour" of the national team's fans during a World Cup qualifier against Kosovo on October 6.

Media reports after the match stated that sections of the home and away support engaged in anti-Serbian chants during the game, which was played in Albania and classified as a home match for Kosovo.

In addition to the fine, which equates to just over £41,000, the Croatian federation said it had also been given a warning by the game's world governing body that more stringent sanctions may follow if there were any further disturbances.

Croatia must play their home qualifier against Iceland on November 12 behind closed doors as the second part of a supporter ban imposed for previous disturbances.

Czech Republic 2-2 Croatia: Flares thrown onto pitch as match briefly suspended

Czech Republic kept their Euro 2016 hopes alive with a dramatic comeback against Croatia in St Etienne.

Croatia had led 2-0 and looked like winning comfortably until their star midfielder Luka Modric was substituted midway through the second half. Goals by Milan Skoda and a late penalty by Tomas Necid earned a point for the Czechs.

Ugly scenes marred the match late on, however, as flares were thrown onto the pitch and fans scuffled in a Croatia section of the stadium. English referee Mark Clattenburg suspended the match for several minutes as Croatia's players appealed to their own supporters to calm down.

Visit ITV's Euro 2016 website for a full report and to watch highlights


Croatia deducted point over Swastika incident

Police officers are seen on a pitch where the faint pattern of a swastika is seen. Credit: Reuters

Croatia have been deducted one European Championship qualifying point and fined 100,000 euros after a Swastika appeared to be marked on the pitch in a match against Italy.

They have also been ordered to play their next two home games behind closed doors.

Bleach was used to imprint the symbol on the pitch, which the Croatians have claimed was sabotage done ahead of the 1-1 draw in Split.

"The Croatian Football Federation has received a point deduction for the European Qualifiers and has been ordered to play two matches behind closed doors," European soccer's governing body UEFA said in a statement on Thursday.

The match with Italy was being played behind closed doors after Croatia were punished for racist chanting during their match with Norway in March.

Uefa open disciplinary proceedings over 'Swastika'

The Swastika could be seen from the stands. Credit: Reuters

The Croatian FA could find themselves in trouble after Uefa opened disciplinary proceedings against them over a Swastika being marked onto their pitch ahead of their behind-closed-doors clash with Italy.

Bleach was used to imprint the symbol on the pitch, which the Croatians have claimed was sabotage done ahead of the 1-1 draw in Split.

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