Preview - England vs Croatia 18 November 18

Started by Harry85, Nov 17, 2018, 05:00 AM

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Harry85

Uefa Nations League A Group 4
England vs Croatia
Sunday, November 18th, 2018
22:00pm (GMT +8 Timing)
Stadium: Wembley Stadium

England:
Last five matches form: L W D W W
Average goals per match (last ten games): 1.20
Average goals against per match (last ten games): 1.00
Top Scorer: Harry Kane (19)

Croatia:
Last five matches form: D L D W W
Average goals per match (last ten games): 1.50
Average goals against per match (last ten games): 1.90
Top Scorer: Ivan Perišić (22)

A big one in League A Group 4 this weekend as Croatia travel to Wembley Stadium to take on Gareth Southgate's England side. Should the sides draw then Spain will win the Group and Croatia will be relegated. Any other result will see the winner top the table and the loser relegated. Plenty on the line here.

Annihilated 6-0 by Spain in their opening fixture, it was tough to imagine that Croatia would be in with a chance of winning this Group headed into the final fixture. The World Cup runners up have rebounded in fairly good style though in drawing with England at home in an empty stadium and beating Spain 3-2.

England were also beaten by Spain in their opening game, and also gained revenge when beating the Spanish last time out, also by a 3-2 score-line. They warmed up for this with a 3-0 friendly win over the USA.

Croatia of course won the last really big game between these sides when knocking England out in the semi finals of the World Cup this summer.

England are expected to start Luke Shaw at left back with Kieran Trippier ruled out through injury.

Josip Pivaric is definitely out for Croatia, but of more concern is the possible absence of Ivan Rakitić who picked up a knock against Spain.

Victory for England here wont quite gain revenge for that World Cup defeat, but with Croatia having to go for the win, this looks ideally set up for the pacey counter-attack of the Three Lions and we expect them to pick up the win and top the table.


Prediction: England 4 - 2 Croatia

Harry85

Half time: 0 - 0
Full time: 2 - 1
Shots:  13 - 7
Shots on target: 10 - 4
Corner Kicks: 9 - 4
Possession: 64% - 36%

Marcelo Brozovic, Tin Jedvaj and Dejan Lovren were all booked for Croatia at Wembley Stadium with referee Anastasios Sidiropoulos also taking the name of England's Ross Barkley.

A hard fought - and late - win for England here, but undoubtedly a deserved one on their overall performance, as Gareth Southgate's men gained some semblance of revenge for that World Cup semi-final defeat.

Both sides wee having their moments early on, as much through errors from the opposition as their own good play but were unable to make the breakthrough. Harry Kane of England having perhaps the best of the opportunities in the first half. His moment would not come until later though. 0-0 at the break.

The opening goal came 12 minutes into the second half and it was Croatia who grabbed it. Andrej Kramaric receiving the ball around the penalty pot and showing good feet and patience before firing into the top right corner via a significant deflection off Eric Dier.

The equaliser came 12 minutes from time. A long throw from the right making its way all the way to Harry Kane at the far post who then stabbed back across goal. Jesse Lingard on hand to tap home from almost on the goal line.

Then five minutes from time England won it. Ben Chilwell swinging in a free kick from the let hand side which evaded all bar Kane sliding in on the stretch to finish into the bottom right from around six yards. 2-1 final score.

So, from what looked the toughest of all the groups it is England who progress to the semi-final stages of this fledgling competition. The news wasn't so good for Croatia though who suffer relegation. Spain finish second and stay put.



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