Three Croatia stars who are key to tonight’s World Cup Semi-Final
Nick Murphy | 11 July 2018
Who should England be wary of?
It’s judgement day in Moscow. England take on Croatia tonight for a place in Sunday’s World Cup Final.
The Coral News Team have already previewed the clash with a Big Match Breakdown. But here the team have taken the opportunity to hone in on three of the individuals who the Three Lions need to be wary of at the Luhzniki Stadium.
English football fans are already familiar with the capabilities of Luka Modric. The Croatian has lit up this World Cup with his incisive midfield performances. But it was during his time with Tottenham Hotspur that the diminutive Croatian first came to people’s attention.
Since then he’s shone for Real Madrid and grown into one of the world’s most accomplished players. He’s the man charged with picking the England lock in Moscow tonight, and will likely start further forward than he did during the quarter-final victory over Russia.
The performance of Jordan Henderson will be key to the influence the Madrid magician has on the game. Three Lions fans will be hoping the Liverpool ace comes out on top two months after the pair last met in the Champions League Final in Kiev.
It’s been something of a quiet tournament for Mario Mandzukic. The Juventus star has netted one goal in four appearances in Russia. Yet it’s his all-round play that the England defence needs to be wary of.
The 6ft 1in forward is mentally strong, physically tough and offers a significant aerial threat both in terms of his own goalscoring capabilities and bringing others into play. Despite being dangerous from set-pieces in the opposition area, John Stones, Harry Maguire and co. have shown signs of vulnerability when defending dead ball situations in their own 18-yard-box.
Expect him to pose the Three Lions centre-halves with their first real test of strength.
Not too many goalkeepers at this World Cup have the caught the eye in the same way as Danijel Subasic. The Monaco stopper proved the hero in two penalty shootout wins and will be crucial to Croatian success again tonight.
His 6ft 3in frame provides an imposing frame for Harry Kane and co. And after impressing from dead ball situations, he could well be needed again tonight. He is expected to overcome injury to feature against the Three Lions.
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