Kick-off: Wednesday, 11th July @19:00 GMT
Venue: Luzhniki Stadium, Moscow
Head to head record
Croatia vs England 2-4 (2004 European Championship)
Croatia vs England 2-0 (2006, European Championship qualifications)
England vs Croatia 2-3 (2007, European Championship qualifications)
Croatia vs England 1-4 (2008, World Cup qualifying)
England vs Croatia 5-1 (2009, World Cup qualifying)
There were also two friendlies between the teams, in 1996 when they played out a draw and in 2003 when England won.
Croatia vs England predictions
Croatia had two rollercoasters of a game and managed to win both. A win against Russia in a highly charged atmosphere was no small feat. However, there is not much time to recuperate after the game before the semi-finals, especially after again playing 120 minutes. No doubt, they will be ready for the most important game of their generation.
England, on the other hand, had an easier job of it in the quarter-finals and are yet to be seriously challenged in this World Cup. Still, you can only play against the team in front of you and they’ve done that well. It’s been 28 years since England was last in the semi-finals. The whole nation is hoping that this will finally be their tournament.
After twenty years
In 1998 Croatia played good football and managed to finish third in the World Cup. Since then, they’ve had tries but never managed to find the chemistry within the team. It looks like they finally found it.
Led by Modric up front and Rakitic in the back, the team is talented and competent to beat any team on any given day. The goalkeeper Subasic has been a rock as well, especially in the last penalty shootout, but it’s still unclear whether he will recover from a hamstring injury he suffered against Russia.
They will not have Vrsaljko for the match against England but will have a suitable substitute in Corluka. After twenty years of waiting, they have the best chance yet to make it to the final of the World Cup and then anything is possible.
Daring to dream
England have had their share of capable squads over the years but failed to capitalize on them. Since winning the World Cup in 1966, they haven’t made much of an impact. And there wasn’t much in terms of expectations before this tournament.
However, they started well, Kane was on fire and the draw opened up. All of a sudden they, and the nation, dare to dream. The team has performed with confidence even when things haven’t been going their way.
Henderson is a question mark for Wednesday, but the rest of the squad is fully ready. Coach Southgate has been praised by the media at home; he will try and use that to fire up his team before the biggest test for this young team yet. The players will surely respond adequately.
Some interesting facts
- Croatia haven’t lost the last nine matches in the World Cup.
- England have been defeated only once in their last 16 outings in the World Cup.
- Both teams had 19 shots on target so far in the tournament.
Croatia vs England betting pick
From the onset this looks like a tight contest. Statistically, in this World Cup, there is little difference between the teams. Come Wednesday, both sides will be confident of winning and making it to the final against either France or Belgium. And they both have the players to do it.
England are favorites to win this game as they are still to show their full potential and Croatia has had two hard games which might have drained them a bit. England will particularly be dangerous from set pieces scoring eight of 11 goals in that way. Croatia will not back down even if they go a goal down as we’ve seen in their matches.
Pick: England to win