Dunne wary of Modric

Irish ace knows they must stand off opponents

Richard Dunne: Knows Ireland need to keep Luka Modric quiet when they face Croatia

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Republic of Ireland defender Richard Dunne knows they must keep Luka Modric quiet in their opening Euro 2012 encounter.

Aston Villa man Dunne is wary of the threat posed by Tottenham playmaker Modric ahead of the meeting between the two countries in Poznan.

Dunne admits Giovanni Trapattoni's men cannot afford to allow Modric to dictate the game feeling the midfielder makes Croatia tick.

"Modric is brilliant," said Dunne

"The Croatian side is technically very good, but he's the one that really makes them tick.

"If you stand off the likes of Modric and Jelavic, you're in trouble, so for us, our aim is to be on the front foot for the whole tournament - straight from the first minute of the first game."

Richard Dunne

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"When we played them in Dublin last year, he was the one that passed and moved and created the chances.

"I know, having played against and seen him at Tottenham for a long time, he's one of the top players in the tournament, so we'll have to look after him."

Jelavic danger

Dunne is also aware of the threat posed by Croatian striker Nikica Jelavic following his impressive form for Everton in the second half of last season after his arrival from Rangers in January.

"He's [Modric] definitely one to stop, but Nikica Jelavic has done brilliantly since he joined the Premier League, so we know they are coming into the tournament at top form," he added.

"But that's all part of playing at a major tournament. You play against the best sides, and the best players.

"To progress you have to do a job on them.

"If you stand off the likes of Modric and Jelavic, you're in trouble, so for us, our aim is to be on the front foot for the whole tournament - straight from the first minute of the first game."