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England to get back to winning ways
11 October 2018, 15:01
England to get back to winning ways
Dokshin Vlad / Shutterstock.com

The UEFA Nations League hasn’t got off to a great start for Croatia and England. The two nations have played just once in the competition, but they already see themselves six points behind Group 4 leaders Spain.

On Friday night, the two teams will meet in a rematch of their World Cup semifinal. England will be out for revenge while Croatia want to avoid another throttling in the UEFA Nations League.

England’s post-World Cup hasn’t seen the Three Lions crack on from their semi-final performance. The team lost to Spain, 2-1, to open the UEFA Nations League.

Gareth Southgate’s men took an early advantage thanks to Marcus Rashford, but two minutes later let Spain off the hook. Saul scored in the 13th minute before Rodrigo tallied the winner in the 32nd minute. England did defeat Switzerland in a friendly, but the pressure will be ramped up in Rijeka on Friday.

Croatia are still sore from the 6-0 beating Spain inflicted on them. It was the largest defeat in team history and they showed no signs of being the World Cup runners-up. The loss came just days after a 1-1 draw with a Cristiano Ronaldo-less Portugal. Zlatko Dalic and his players must forget about the embarrassing loss and move on against England.

Some experts are predicting Croatia to be a bust following their World Cup exploits. The team lost several key starting players, including goalkeeper Danijel Subasic, who was one of the team’s true leaders. Star striker Mario Mandzukic also retired from international duty leaving a large hole in the No. 9 position.

Southgate is expected to deploy many of the same players that featured at the World Cup. However, he is looking to add in some young, inexperienced internationals. Ben Chilwell, Ross Barkley, and Joe Gomez have all started the English Premier League season well. All three have been called up to the Three Lions and they could start against Croatia. Jadon Sancho and James Maddison have also been called into the squad. Harry Kane will be deployed as England’s No. 9 and despite looking tired in the early stages of the Premier League season, he will be their biggest goal threat.

Making this match awkward for both nations will be that it is being played behind closed doors. Croatia are being punished for an incident during Euro 2016 qualifiers when a swastika was marked onto their home pitch.

The rematch of the World Cup semifinal will be close, but England will edge out their rivals on Friday night. Croatia are not the team they were just a few months ago, while England are still bringing in good, young talent.

Predictions for UEFA Nations League

Home team - Away team Forebet
flag_253 NaL
Kazakhstan
Andorra

16/10/2018 15:00
1
flag_253 NaL
Armenia
Macedonia FYR

16/10/2018 17:00
1
flag_253 NaL
France
Germany

16/10/2018 19:45
1
flag_253 NaL
Gibraltar
Liechtenstein

16/10/2018 19:45
1

UEFA Nations League - predictions, tips, statistics
League A Group 1
OVERALL TABLE PTS GP W D L GF GA +/-
1. France 4 2 1 1 0 2 1 1
2. Holland 3 2 1 0 1 4 2 2
3. Germany 1 2 0 1 1 0 3 -3
League A Group 2
OVERALL TABLE PTS GP W D L GF GA +/-
1. Switzerland 6 3 2 0 1 9 3 6
2. Belgium 6 2 2 0 0 5 1 4
3. Iceland 0 3 0 0 3 1 11 -10
League A Group 3
OVERALL TABLE PTS GP W D L GF GA +/-
1. Portugal 6 2 2 0 0 4 2 2
2. Italy 4 3 1 1 1 2 2 0
3. Poland 1 3 0 1 2 3 5 -2
League A Group 4
OVERALL TABLE PTS GP W D L GF GA +/-
1. Spain 6 3 2 0 1 10 4 6
2. England 4 3 1 1 1 4 4 0
3. Croatia 1 2 0 1 1 0 6 -6
League B Group 1
OVERALL TABLE PTS GP W D L GF GA +/-
1. Ukraine 6 2 2 0 0 3 1 2
2. Czech Rep 3 2 1 0 1 3 3 0
3. Slovakia 0 2 0 0 2 1 3 -2
League B Group 2
OVERALL TABLE PTS GP W D L GF GA +/-
1. Russia 7 3 2 1 0 4 1 3
2. Turkey 3 3 1 0 2 4 6 -2
3. Sweden 1 2 0 1 1 2 3 -1
League B Group 3
OVERALL TABLE PTS GP W D L GF GA +/-
1. Bosnia-Herzegovina 9 3 3 0 0 5 1 4
2. Austria 3 2 1 0 1 1 1 0
3. N. Ireland 0 3 0 0 3 1 5 -4
League B Group 4
OVERALL TABLE PTS GP W D L GF GA +/-
1. Denmark 4 2 1 1 0 2 0 2
2. Wales 3 2 1 0 1 4 3 1
3. Ireland 1 2 0 1 1 1 4 -3
League C Group 1
OVERALL TABLE PTS GP W D L GF GA +/-
1. Israel 6 3 2 0 1 4 2 2
2. Scotland 3 2 1 0 1 3 2 1
3. Albania 3 3 1 0 2 1 4 -3
League C Group 2
OVERALL TABLE PTS GP W D L GF GA +/-
1. Finland 12 4 4 0 0 5 0 5
2. Greece 6 4 2 0 2 3 4 -1
3. Hungary 4 4 1 1 2 5 6 -1
4. Estonia 1 4 0 1 3 3 6 -3
League C Group 3
OVERALL TABLE PTS GP W D L GF GA +/-
1. Bulgaria 9 3 3 0 0 5 2 3
2. Norway 6 3 2 0 1 3 1 2
3. Cyprus 3 3 1 0 2 3 5 -2
4. Slovenia 0 3 0 0 3 2 5 -3
League C Group 4
OVERALL TABLE PTS GP W D L GF GA +/-
1. Serbia 8 4 2 2 0 5 2 3
2. Montenegro 7 4 2 1 1 6 3 3
3. Romania 6 4 1 3 0 4 3 1
4. Lithuania 0 4 0 0 4 2 9 -7
League D Group 1
OVERALL TABLE PTS GP W D L GF GA +/-
1. Georgia 9 3 3 0 0 6 0 6
2. Latvia 2 3 0 2 1 1 2 -1
3. Kazakhstan 2 3 0 2 1 2 4 -2
4. Andorra 2 3 0 2 1 1 4 -3
League D Group 2
OVERALL TABLE PTS GP W D L GF GA +/-
1. Luxembourg 9 4 3 0 1 10 1 9
2. Belarus 8 4 2 2 0 6 0 6
3. Moldova 5 4 1 2 1 2 4 -2
4. San Marino 0 4 0 0 4 0 13 -13
League D Group 3
OVERALL TABLE PTS GP W D L GF GA +/-
1. Kosovo 8 4 2 2 0 6 2 4
2. Azerbaijan 6 4 1 3 0 5 2 3
3. Faroe Islands 4 4 1 1 2 4 7 -3
4. Malta 2 4 0 2 2 4 8 -4
League D Group 4
OVERALL TABLE PTS GP W D L GF GA +/-
1. Macedonia FYR 9 3 3 0 0 8 1 7
2. Liechtenstein 3 3 1 0 2 4 6 -2
3. Armenia 3 3 1 0 2 2 4 -2
4. Gibraltar 3 3 1 0 2 1 4 -3

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