Croatia vs Spain (By: Stanioooo)
Croatia will host Spain in a game from Group 4 in League A at Maksimir Stadium.
OK, Spain and England have one match left, while Croatia will face both teams. The situation in the group is:
Spain- 6 points, England- 4 points, Croatia- 1 point.
So, in the last match England will host Croatia at Wembley and if England take the three points at home against the Croatians, they will finish with 7 points. Spain have 6 till now, so they know only the win in Zagreb will earn them the 1st place in the group, which is their priority with Enrique ahead. A draw can be deadly, because England have advantage H2H against them, because of more goals as visitors- 1:2 win for Spain in London and 2:3 win for England in Sevilla.
Personally for me, Spain play the most attractive football in this group with their new coach and it will not be fair because of one "strangely" poor 1st half against England to miss the 1st place and team like England, which had only one quality half(the 1st one in Sevilla) to qualify 1st in the group. Yeah, there is also a chance Croatia to top the group with two wins against Spain and England, but that's only possibility and the chances to happen for me are not more than 5%. Most of the Croatian top players are really not in their best form right now. Modric still looks tired and even confused on the pitch, he is obviously not the one from the previous season in Madrid or with the national team during the summer. It's the same with Rakitic- he even received a red card in the last Barca game against Betis. Ivan Perisic is the man to look in their squad. He is the real weapon as Mario Mandzukic retired from the national team.
Croatians will be also without Subasic and Corluka(both retired), together with Pivaric, Barisic, Strinic, Cop and Kalinic.
On the other side is Spain. They will also miss some important players like Nacho, Bartra, Albiol, Alonso, Carvajal and Monreal in defense, together with Koke, Alcantara, Costa and Alcacer. OK, the amount of players missing is not small for sure, but still they have absolutely quality starting line-up. It's expected to be:
De Gea- Azpilicueta- Ramos- Hermoso- Alba- Busquets- Saul- Isco- Asensio- Rodrigo- Aspas
Of course, he can see some little changes and maybe Ceballos can start in the midfield, while Isco to play infront with Rodrigo and Asensio or Morata to start from the 1st minute. We will see that starting like-up which will choose Enrique. Hermoso is the new one, who is expected to start as a partner of Ramos in the centre of the defense. The young defender from Espanyol made very quality start of the season with his team and with the absence of Nacho+ Pique retirement, he looks like the best option in the next seasons maybe to partner Ramos.
Spain just have to take the three points in Zagreb, any other result can mean they will finish 2nd in the group, which will be another disappointment for their team after the fiasco at the World cup in Russia. With Enrique ahead I strongly believe in Spain and although Croatians will not support me here for sure, I am going with Spain to win this game. Croatians know they have very little chances for the 1st place, the stadium is sold out, but they realize this is something like a friendly game for them and I doubt they will play like in the WC with such an ambition during the whole game. They showed absolutely nothing in their first two games against Spain and England and the results proved it- 6:0 for Spain and 0:0 against England at home in realy boring game with no spectators. I think most of the players in Croatian squad are waiting for the real part of the qualifications for Euro 2020 and they don't take too seriously the Nations League. The quality and the motivation of the Spain's squad is bigger and I am going with them to win this game and to close any intrigue in the group.
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Croatia vs Spain prediction
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