The Tottenham Hotspur playmaker has become the subject of a tug-of-war between Manchester United and Chelsea this summer after the north Londoners failed to secure a place in next season’s Champions League.
Harry Redknapp’s side finished in the Premier League’s automatic qualification places but were demoted to the Europa League after Chelsea, who finished sixth, lifted the European Cup.
But Bilic, speaking ahead of Croatia’s Group C opener with the Republic of Ireland on Sunday, believes that Modrić will not become distracted by possible change of direction and insists the decision rests with both the 26-year-old and White Hart Lane chiefs.
“Don’t worry, Luka won’t be affected by talk of his future,” Bilic told the Sun.
“No way. We talk a lot and Luka always puts his team-mates ahead of his own ambitions.
“He’s very responsible, he knows he has to have a great tournament and be on top of his game for us to do what we are aiming to do.
“Talk of his future will only motivate him and boost his confidence. It’s also my job to turn that to his advantage, to make sure that extra bit of pressure will drive him and will not be a weight on his shoulders.
“As Croatia manager and a fan, or his older brother, his father or his friend, I want him to be happy.
“When I called him and said he was already with a big club at Tottenham I only wanted to tell him that he shouldn’t panic and say to himself: ‘I have to leave’. Now it’s going to be his and the club’s decision.”
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