Rakitic gets one up on Arda as Croatia narrowly beat Turkey

Rakitic gets one up on Arda as Croatia narrowly beat Turkey

The FC Barcelona midfield duo went head-to-head in the Euro 2016 Group D opener in Paris and its the Croat who was smiling at the end

FC Barcelona midfielders Ivan Rakitic and Arda Turan went head-to-head in the opening match of Euro 2016’s Group D in Paris, where Croatia earned a 1-0 win over Turkey.

The two countries have played out some dramatic matches in recent years and, with both teams looking to set down a marker before group favourites Spain kick off their campaign, three points were all the more important going into the match.

The sides looked to be heading towards the interval all square, that was before Real Madrid midfielder Luka Modric hit a superb volley from well outside the area to give Croatia the lead.

Rakitic began to dictate proceedings as the game grew on, though Arda, captaining his country, was a key factor in Turkey’s late push for a leveler but, eventually, Croatia held on for a precious win.

Spain, with Barca stars Jordi Alba, Gerard Pique, Sergio Busquets and Andres Iniesta among their ranks, begin their campaign on Monday against Czech Republic (3.00pm CET)

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