Place: Kaliningrad Stadium. Kaliningrad.
Date: on the 16th of June, 2018 (Saturday)
Match start: 20:00 (GMT+1)
Tournament: FIFA World Cup, group stage, 1st round
The Blazers came to the World championship by playoffs matches against Greece (0:0, 4:1). Without Croatia the World Cup has at once lost a number of stars of the world football. Therefore all (except the Greek fans) have considered the getting of this national team into the tournament from the positive point of view. Zlatko Dalić has been designated to a post of the Croatian national team only in October, 2017 but for short period of time the national team has managed to bypass Ukraine and Turkey in the qualification cycle.
Dalić has a number of football players of the highest level: Subašić, Vrsaljko, Modrić, Perišić, Kovačić, Mandžukić, Kalinić, Rakitić, Brozović and many others. The Blazers became for a long time the team that is near the European national teams and it is capable of high achievements at the international level. After getting into the World Cup, Croatia in March has held two friendly matches. At first there was an unexpected defeat from Peru (0:2) and after the victory over Mexico (1:0). In total on World championships Croatia participated 4 times, having won the 3rd place in France in 1998 (Šuker and Prosinečki ‘s legendary team).
The African national team which always differs in magnificent selection of talented football players is going to the W Cup to protect the honor of the continent. Nigeria was qualified to the World championship by participation in the playoffs of the African qualification where during the decisive match Morocco (4:0) was destroyed. Before the World Cup 2018 Nigeria has planned four friendly matches: RD Congo (twice), England and the Czech Republic.
Gernot Rohr is the head of the team. He is not widely known but his work with Nigeria is not bad. Previously the honor of Nigeria in the World Cup will be defended by such famous football players as: Musa, Ndidi, Michael Obinna, Obi, Moses, Iwobi, Ighalo and Iheanacho. If the Federation satisfies financial concerns of the stars that is quite usual in the African football, then on the tournament we will see the interesting and perspective national team.
Bookmaker coefficients on the match Croatia vs Nigeria
Bookmakers don’t really believe in success of Nigeria in this match, giving on a victory of Nigeria the coefficient 4.88. The victory of Croatia is 1.90 and draw – 3.56. It is difficult to criticize the choice of bookmakers.
Traditionally popular bets on totals at large international tournaments are estimated by bookmakers this way: total over 2.5 – odds 2.40 and total under 2.5- odds 1.67.
Croatia is for Nigeria too strong and experienced rival, even if we see Africans in their best condition. Besides Nigeria has one more serious minus – an obvious imbalance of the squad in favor of the attacking line.
Our tip: Croatia to win – odds 1.90 Pinnacle
Bearing in mind that Nigeria will rely on attack that will be the logical course from the coaching staff of the African national team, in this match it is possible to expect the scored goals by both teams.