Round Of 16: Croatia Vs Denmark | Place: Novgorod Stadium | Live Telecast: Sony Select 1 (HD)
Dark horse Croatia are facing their European rivals Denmark in tonight’s Croatia Vs Denmark clash with a possibility of facing Spain in the Quarter-Finals.
Ahem…. As we were saying…. 😳
Who's ready to do it all again?
— FIFA World Cup (@FIFAWorldCup) July 1, 2018
FIFA 2018 Russia World Cup, now at its peak with plenty of thrill and excitement will give another treat for the fans with the Croatia Vs Denmark fixture. Last night European giants Portugal and South American heavyweights Argentina were knocked out from the Round of 16 which saw plenty of action. Sunday evening won’t be any different for Croatia and Denmark.
Croatia come into this fixture being unbeaten in the tournament with all possible 9 points in bag. Only side who have performed well in all three group stage matches by scoring 7 goals and conceding just 1 in the process. 2-0 win against Nigeria and 2-1 win against Iceland with the major highlight being their dominant 3-0 victory over Argentina. Though many wouldn’t have expected that but their brilliance in midfield have served them well till date. Fans and football pundits are already calling this midfield ‘Golden Generation’ of Croatia.
Midfield with some big names of Barcelona’s Ivan Rakitic and Real Madrid duo Luka Modric and Matteo Kovacic has helped them dominate their opposition. In defense, performances from Liverpool’s Dejan Lovren is proved to be the key for their defensive stability, conceding just one goal, that too from a penalty by Gylfi Sigurdsson. On the other end, goals are coming at a constant rate as they have scored two or more goals in their all three group stage fixtures.
Both #Nigeria and #Iceland team finished their last match of #FifaWorldCupRussia2018. Good luck for next 2022 FIFA World Cup #Qatar#CRO #ARG #NGA #isl #WorldCup #FIFAWC2018 #FifaWorldCupRussia2018 pic.twitter.com/K89JDE0EvP
— Newsklic (@newsklic) June 26, 2018
Zlatko Dalic rested his some key players against Iceland in their last match. Ivan Rakitic and Brozovic are expected to come in midfield to partner Luka Modric for tonight’s Croatia Vs Denmark. Matteo Kovacic has impressed from bench and in his last outing against Iceland, so he maybe pushing his name for the starting XI in place of Brozovic. Star veteran Mario Mandzukic will return up front who was also rested against Iceland. In goal, Subasic will return to replace Kalinic with the former keeping two clean sheets in two matches. Dejan Lovren and Vida will be at center of defense alongside returning full-backs Vrsaljko and Strinic for tonight’s Croatia Vs Denmark.
Luka Modric (Real Madrid, Midfielder)
Luka Modric has been leading Croatia by an example with the captain’s armband. His contribution in midfield with two goals to his name is very commendable and is one of the contenders for the Golden Ball in Russia.
Modric replaced Barcelona’s legend Andres Iniesta for the World Midfielder of Year 2017 and has surely lived up to that status for both club and country with his consistent form. His goal against Argentina was pure class as he smashed a long range shot into the right hand top corner. Modric has played in a more advance role in midfield ahead of Ivan Rakitic in first two group stage matches.
"They're from a different planet!" 👽
Rakitic is a BIG fan of both Iniesta & Modric! 🇪🇸🇭🇷 pic.twitter.com/rvZPqCcNri
— Goal (@goal) June 29, 2018
Former Spurs’s midfielder performance in midfield and the battle against current Spurs’s magician Christian Eriksen will be a treat to watch in the Croatia Vs Denmark.
Dejan Lovren (Liverpool, Defender)
Lovren may not be the key player for Croatia but he is main man leading their defense in Russia. His performances in group stages has helped Croatia become best the defensive unit in Russia till now.
Two #WorldCup matches, two clean sheets…
— Fantasy Premier League (@OfficialFPL) June 21, 2018
Dejan Lovren has established a strong partnership with Virgil Van Djik at the club level for Liverpool and was one of the key factors for their strong run to the UEFA Champions League final after coming from bad phase of criticism. He will be the key again for Croatia if they decide to trust their defense against the pacey Denmark.
Not as convincing as their opponents Croatia, Denmark are also unbeaten in Russia. Narrow 1-0 win against Peru, 1-1 draw against Australia and a scoreless draw against France were enough for them to grab the second spot in their group. Holding giants France to 0-0 draw will surely bring some positives in the Denmark Camp.
They have also conceded just one goal from all three group stage fixtures from Australia’s Mile Jedinak penalty, which shows their defensive strength. But while going forward, they have scored just two goals during the group stage. They have to be wary of this weakness when going up against Croatia’s strong defense in tonight’s Croatia Vs Denmark.
Final table standings in group B
France go through as leaders on 7 points, two above second placed Denmark.
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— Muyita Joel (@muyitajoel) June 26, 2018
Denmark may welcome key defender William Kvist back into the starting lineup after missing the last match through a minor rib injury. Main man Christian Eriksen is expected to start again in the advanced midfield role. Up front, Jorgenson and Cornelius are fighting for the striker role as both have failed to impress during the group stage matches. It is Cornelius who will get the nod ahead of Jorgenson and will be supported by Sisto and Braithwaite from the flanks in tonight’s Croatia Vs Denmark clash.
Christian Eriksen (Tottenham Hotspur, Midfielder)
Christian Eriksen, with his records for the National team makes him their best player in recent years. He has scored one goal and assisted one in Russia alongside covering more ground than any other player in Russia, 36 kilometers.
His 14 goal contribution in 12 World Cup Qualifier matches is the key reason for Denmark’s place in Russia. With 82 appearances for National Team at the age of 26 is enough to make him a threat for any opposition.
Luka Modric vs Christian Eriksen
— WhoScored.com (@WhoScored) July 1, 2018
He will be battling with Croatia’s jewel midfield tonight and if he come out of the Croatia Vs Denmark battle victorious then it is Denmark who are progressing to the Quarter-finals in Russia.
Kasper Schmeichel (Leicester City, Goalkeeper)
Kasper Schmeichel is proving to be a wall in goal for Denmark after conceding just one goal in three group stage matches, that too from a penalty. Keeping two clean sheets in three matches and saving 12 number of shots on target out of 13 is pretty much one of the key reasons for Denmark performing so well in the group stages.
🏆 World Cup stat-attack:
🇲🇽 Mexico have faced the most shots (58).
🇩🇪 Germany have had the most shots (72).
🇵🇦 Panama have had the most cards (11).
🇧🇷 Neymar has had the most shots (16).
🇩🇰 Kasper Schmeichel has the best save percentage (92.3%). pic.twitter.com/n2usOpEKk1
— Sky Bet (@SkyBet) June 28, 2018
The Leicester City keeper will be busy on Sunday against the free-scoring Croatia and needs to be at his best if Denmark wants to qualify for the Quarter-finals.
Croatia Vs Denmark: 2-1