Published: Wed, July 11, 2018
Sport | By Floyd Cook

Croatia vs. England preview, time, how to watch

Croatia vs. England preview, time, how to watch

"We were never quite sure how far this team could go", Southgate said.

England will face Croatia in the semi-final of the World Cup at 7pm, Wednesday 11 July.

The squad fly out to the Russian capital, Moscow, on Tuesday afternoon for their first World Cup semi-final in 28 years.

"We will get a good group of us together to watch it - we haven't decided where yet, it might be Crown", Mr Zlendic said.

Croatia, meanwhile have made the World Cup knockout rounds for the first time since 1998, when they reached the semi-final and finished third overall.

"England have great players - they are a fantastic team", he added. England are one of the favourites to win the World Cup and you have to respect that.

England are the holders of the Federation Internationale de Football Association U17 World Cup and Federation Internationale de Football Association U20 World Cup - and are just two wins away from making it a unique hat-trick.

Despite a comfortable run through their group, Croatia has had a tougher ride in the knockout rounds, needing extra time and penalties to eliminate both Denmark in the round of 16 and then hosts Russian Federation in the last four. Skipper Harry Kane is at the top of the race for Golden Boot with six goals. Both sides had differing quarter-final performances and are now just a game away from the biggest prize in World Football.

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However, Kane's partner in attack, Raheem Sterling, has pace to burn and England's totem will be on hand to benefit if that causes problems for the Croatians. The Three Lions are confident, and why shouldn't they be? Otherwise, England have no fitness issues going into the last-four.

Juventus striker Mandzukic is Croatia's main goal threat and although he has only scored once in Russian Federation, his game is about a lot more than just finding the net.

It's also his work when he picks up the ball in tight situations and winning crucial free-kicks for England, couple that with his threat from set-pieces, it arguably makes Kane the best striker in the tournament.

"I've played against Modric a few times, he's probably one of the best players I've played against", said Henderson.

The calmness in England's camp on and off the field is in stark contrast to Croatia's experience.

If Vrsaljko is ruled out then Dalic has two options, either bringing in specialist right-back Tin Jedvaj, who played against Iceland, or the more probable option of moving Domagoj Vida to right-back and bringing in the experienced Vedran Corluka to pair Dejan Lovren at centre back.

In the latest in a series of controversies, former worldwide Ognjen Vukojevic was kicked out of their delegation on Monday and fined by Federation Internationale de Football Association for posting a pro-Ukraine video clip following their penalty shootout victory over Russia on Saturday.

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