(Photo:Igor Soban/PIXSELL) (Photo:Igor Soban/PIXSELL)

Slovenia’s Sandi Lovrić scored the only goal of the game in the 15th minute. This was the first time Croatia lost to Slvoenia in 10 matches.

It was a disappointing performance by Croatia in Ljubljana. Coach Zlatko Dalić’s team were engaged only in the first 15 minutes of the game, when they created the only real opportunities of the match but failed to capitalize on Slovenia’s confused defense. Andrej Kramarić hit the post in the 6th minute and Nikola Vlašić sent shot from the left past goal keeper Jan Oblak but hit the opposite post.

Slovenia scored a lucky goal in the 15th minute, giving them the confidence and aggression they needed. Croatia had no effective response to their elation. Croatia’s offense crumbled against Slovenia’s now confident defense headed by goalkeeper Jan Oblak and center-back Miha Mevlja.

Croatia has two more qualifiers over the next five days. They play Cyprus on Satuday and Malta on Tuesday. Both games will take place in Rijeka.