Few players have experienced such a surprising fall from grace as Luka Modric.
The Real Madrid star should be an icon in his native Croatia. For a long time, he was a hero in the Balkans, hailed as their most successful footballing export for a generation.
All that has changed due to his role in the well-publicised trial of Zdravko Mamic, a former chief executive at Dinamo Zagreb.
There are several charges against Mamic, but the most notable is the one relating to Modric’s transfer from Zagreb to Tottenham in 2008.
It’s alleged that he illegally took some of the transfer fee for himself when it was intended for Dinamo.
The defence has been attempting to argue that there was nothing wrong with what he did, and this is where Modric comes in.
The 31-year-old’s contract specified the fee would be split 50-50 between himself and the club. However, the prosecution have suggested that the clause was only signed and backdated after Modric had been sold.
As cited in the Independent, Modric confirmed that version of events to a courtroom, but he has since changed his testimony, saying he was confused.
Understandably, Mamic is in the fans’ bad books, and Modric’s decision to defend him hasn’t gone down well.
There have been calls for him to be stripped of the national team’s captaincy, but it seems he could be facing a much more worrying punishment.
The Independent also report that the Croatia State Attorney Office has confirmed he is now being investigated for perjury over the changed statements.
If found guilty, he could face a jail sentence of between six months to five years.
This is a hugely concerning state of affairs for not only Modric, but for Real, who had nothing to do with the transfer.