Interviews

Modric: “I’m sorry for the way I left Tottenham. I wish we'd parted in a nicer way”

Real Madrid midfielder Luka Modric has told FourFourTwo that he regrets how his Spurs career came to an end in 2012

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The Croatian playmaker spent four seasons with the Lilywhites after arriving from Dinamo Zagreb following Euro 2008, scoring 13 Premier League goals in 127 matches and assisting another 15.

Modric was named Spurs’ player of the year after a 2010/11 campaign that included a run to the quarter-finals of the Champions League, having topped a group featuring holders Inter Milan.

My one regret is that I didn’t win a trophy with Tottenham, despite us being a strong team who played good, attractive football. I’m sorry for the way I left. I wish we had parted in a nicer way

However, an attempt to force through a £40 million move to London rivals Chelsea soured his relationship with fans ahead of his final season at the club. And although he eventually secured an illustrious transfer to Real Madrid instead, Modric admits that he is sorry about the way his departure from N17 panned out.

Speaking exclusively in the March 2018 issue of FFT, he says: “My one regret is that I didn’t win a trophy with Tottenham, despite us being a strong team who played good, attractive football. I’m sorry for the way I left. I wish we had parted in a nicer way. I hope fans understand that I followed my dreams.

“My emotions when I think about the time I spent at Spurs are always really positive. Tottenham is the club that first gave me my opportunity to play in one of the strongest leagues in the world.

“I had a fantastic relationship with the people at the club, and also the fans. The whole atmosphere in and around the club at that time was brilliant, and our results were mostly very good. We played in the quarter-finals of the Champions League, against Real Madrid, and in a League Cup final too.”

Modric has enjoyed immense success since moving to Spain, winning the Champions League on three occasions and helping los Blancos win a first La Liga and European Cup double since 1957/58.

I like what the club has become over the last few seasons. They play the kind of enjoyable and attacking football that I like to see and I definitely think Spurs could win the Premier League title in the near future

But the man who will captain Croatia at this summer’s World Cup finals reveals that he still looks out for Tottenham’s results from time to time, and believes they have the squad capable of lifting a first Premier League title in the not-too-distant future.

“Do I still follow their results? Yes, when I have time,” says the 32-year-old. “I always enjoy watching Tottenham’s games and I really like what the club has become over the last few seasons.

“They play the kind of enjoyable and attacking football that I like to see, and I definitely think Spurs could win the Premier League title in the near future – they’ve got excellent players.”

Read the full interview with Luka Modric in the March 2018 issue of FourFourTwo magazine, which features exclusive chats with Liverpool's new King of the Kop Mo Salah, Spurs' South Korean star Heung-min Son and Manchester City goalkeeper Ederson. Plus, we preview all eight Champions League last 16 ties and experience Man v Fat football, where losing weight is the secret to winning matches. We also spend a week with former Leicester manager Nigel Pearson in Belgium, learn how Gennaro Gattuso made a career from harnessing his inner rage, go One-on-One with ex-England boss Steve McClaren and hear from Michael Laudrup about life in Qatar. Order a copy now, then subscribe!