And that they did, as they romped to a 3-1 victory, with the help of two howlers from Loris Karius and an unfathomably good bicycle kick from Gareth Bale.
Midfielder Modric, also part of Madrid's Champions League triumph, finished as a runner-up with Croatia at the World Cup, winning the best player award at the tournament in Russian Federation.
"I really hope Modric will win because I think what he did in the World Cup was really special", said legendary former Manchester United and Denmark goalkeeper Peter Schmeichel in his role as a Federation Internationale de Football Association ambassador on Monday.
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The 26-year-old was then eliminated from the show, clearly heartbroken by not being able to continue things with Becca. The pair reconnected on the newest season of Bachelor in Paradise but broke up on Monday evening's episode.
The World Cup features heavily, with Russia's Denis Cheryshev, France's Benjamin Pavard and Ronaldo's worldwide team-mate Ricardo Quaresma nominated for providing three of the champagne moments of Russian Federation 2018.
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Messi says Barcelona are desperate for European success this year after three consecutive quarter-final exits.
The Best FIFA Goalkeeper Award will be contested between a trio who shone in Russian Federation, namely Belgium's Thibaut Courtois, France's Hugo Lloris and Denmark's Kasper Schmeichel.
The men's coach prize features former Real boss Zinedine Zidane, France's World Cup-winning boss Didier Deschamps and beaten finalist Zlatko Dalic, of Croatia.
Messi has won four Champions League titles to Ronaldo's five although the Argentine's last win came back in 2015.