Offensive. As confirmed by his own words, Lovro Majer considers himself a trequartista, or a second striker able at feeding the centre-forward as well as finishing. He also acts as a glue between midfield and attack, thanks to an above-average technique, especially in narrow spaces, which was developed during countless 5-a-side football tournaments. Left-footed, the Zagreb-born player aims at creating space and solutions for his teammates by constantly moving all around the pitch, sometimes occupying either the inside forward or the defensive playmaker positions. He can skillfully use his body, and he’s quick to pass the ball when his opponents press him; he’s a real metronome for his team, as he can decide when to change the rhythm of the game, even if he should privilege more direct plays in some occasions. He has a good shot, including in set pieces, and a nice run with the ball.
Defensive.In spite of his role and an average physic, he was amongst the best ball-winning players during the last 1.HNL season, which highlights his commitment and intelligence.
He can’t be asked to contrast or win aerial duels, but his hunger for success pushes Majer to give his best in every game situation, especially when defying the odds against stronger opponents.
Giving up can lead to huge surprises. In 2010, a 12-year-old Lovro Majer faced a choice of paramount importance, as he had to decide whether leaving Dinamo Zagreb, a real dream for every Croatian kid stepping into the football world. Although his technique was already evident, Majer parted ways with the Modri — some said that such choice came as a consequence of a rift between the club and the player’s father, others claimed it was Dinamo Zagreb to let him go due to a poor physical structure. Back then, Majer swapped the Croatian giants with Dubrava with whom, in his very first season, he finished ahead of his former club, composing a wonderful attacking trio alongside Brekalo e Vinko Soldo. Two years later, he joined Trnje — under an ambitious and meticulous coach in Goran Trbović, Majer would earn two runner-up finishes behind Dinamo Zagreb, but Trnje avenged these deceptions by defeating the Zagreb outfit in the 2013 Nike Cup final. Thanks to their brilliant displays, Majer and some teammates caught the eye of Hajduk Split and Everton – however, the youngster opted for an unusual choice and joined NK Lokomotiva, a Dinamo Zagreb’s feeder club where he would continue his growth under coach Trbović, who had moved to the same side. With Lokomotiva Majer would eventually earn his first call-up with the national team, although he missed out on the 2015 U17 World Cup after picking up an injury, a setback that would be mitigated by his first team debut in a 2016-17 Europe League playoff against Santa Coloma. However, a real turning point came in September 2016 — with Lokomotiva losing 2-0 at Slaven Belupo, coach Tomislav Ivković decided to rely on Majer in an attempt to overturn the match. The choice would pay huge dividends, as the young Croatian scored one before delivering two assists to complete a memorable 3-2 comeback win. It was a performance that would mark the start of Majer’s meteoric rise, as from that moment on he was given more playing time — at the end of the season, having delivered 11 assists, he was awarded the best 1.HNL young player. Today, at the age of 19, Majer has already emerged as a leader, having represented both the U19 and senior Croatian national team — now it’s time for the qualitative leap, but the youngster knows how to keep feet on the ground. In spite of some rumours about a return to Dinamo, the player takes time: after successfully completing a trial with Chelsea in the past, the likes of Celtic, Sampdoria, Atlético Madrid, Sevilla and a couple of French clubs are poised to make a move for the Croat.
Despite having an humble and a bit uncommunicative character, Majer is confident about his own quality — in fact, he can easily handle the weight of expectations, to the extent that he deems himself ready for a move abroad, thinking of Serie A and La Liga as the most suitable leagues for his features. He attended many Dinamo Zagreb games as a kid, and now loves watching Arsenal and Barcelona, as well as considering Luka Modrić as his playing model (“the best Croatian player in history,” he said). Majer is constantly focused on work, and recently stressed how talent can be useless without the will to improve every single day. For this reason, he believes that his experiences far from the spotlight of the biggest national clubs have been extremely valuable. He hates losing and makes no mystery of this — when he played for Trnje, he paid a teammate to leave his room after losing a videogame.
Trequartista, second striker
Pro and cons
PRO. Vision, coldness, decisive pass
CONS. Right foot, consistency, injuries