Euro 2016: Croatia vs Portugal – Live stream info, probable line-up, head to head(h2h) record and match preview
The third round-of-16 match of the UEFA Euro 2016 will be played between Croatia and Portugal at the Stade Bollaert-Delelis in Lens. While Portugal, who were expected to win their group easily finished third after three draws, Croatia defeated Spain in their final group stage match to finish first in the league.
After firing blanks in the first two matches, Cristiano Ronaldo burst into life against Hungary and helped his team in somehow qualifying for the knockouts. On the other hand, Croatia defeated Turkey before playing a 2-2 stalemate against the Czech Republic and then toppled the defending champions 2-1 in a pulsating match.
Croatia’s coach Ante Cacic praised the Portuguese team along with reminding his players that everyone in Croatia is rooting for them and they should pull up the socks and be ready for the knockout rounds.
“This is a make-or-break kind of match. We are moving into the knockout rounds now and this match will only send one of two excellent teams into the next stage of the competition. The other team will unfortunately be sent home.
“We are facing a team consisting of extremely talented individuals. They perhaps weren't exceptionally impressive in their group in terms of points won, but they really played well. If we look back, we will remember that they were the dominant team in their matches and created many opportunities.
“When a team plays the way we've been playing, a knock-on effect is that the coach gets his share of praise as well. Coaches always influence results, both good and bad. Unfortunately, that is more visible with bad results than good ones. I accept the praise I've been getting.
“I am not content, though, just like the team is not content. We want to keep going for as long as possible at this tournament. After a long time, we finally have this atmosphere of togetherness in Croatia. Everyone is watching our matches on TV, everyone is rooting for us.”
Portugal’s coach, Fernando Santos, on the other hand, tried to play down their dismal show in the group stage and said that they are ready to play a different game.
“Stats mean nothing. There are two very strong sides. I have as my objective to try and win this game. Croatia have immense quality, just like we do. It will be a game with two sides full of great quality and sides who want to go through. It will be a great game, I'm sure. I think we can beat Croatia.
“It will be a totally different game to the ones we've had. Austria did things well against Portugal, and a lot of people thought we'd beat Iceland but it didn't happen. We are prepared to play a completely different game.
“Croatia have had a little bit more rest time. Obviously we'd have liked more time and I'm sure Croatia would've too. But right now we're here and there's no point crying over spilled milk.”
Live Stream and kick-off time
The match will be live from 00:30 IST (Sunday), 20:00 BST (Saturday). Watch live streaming of Croatia vs Portugal on SonyLIV. Follow Croatia vs Portugal, Euro 2016 Live Score and Commentary with Sportskeeda . The match will be telecasted live on Sony Six and Sony Six HD in India, ESPN in the USA and ITV 1 in the UK. The match will be played at the Stade Bollaert-Delelis in Lens.
Luka Modric and Mario Mandzukic are almost certain to make a return to the starting XI after sitting out for Croatia’s win over Spain.
On the other hand, for Portugal, all the players are fit and took part in training on Friday. Raphael Guerreiro, who had a muscle problem has recovered as well and Santos will have a full squad to pick from. Moreover, Nani will be playing his 100th match for Portugal.
Croatia (4-2-3-1): Subasic; Srna, Corluka, Vida, Strinic; Modric, Badelj; Brozovic, Rakitic, Perišic; Mandzukic.
Portugal (4-4-2): Rui Patrício; Vieirinha, Carvalho, Pepe, Guerreiro; William Carvalho, João Moutinho, André Gomes, João Mário; Nani, Ronaldo.
Croatia – WDWWW
Croatia have a near perfect record in the last five, or rather last 10 matches. They have drawn 2 and won 8 of their last 10 matches, which gives a clear insight on how dangerous this Croatian team can be. Spain’s defeat is a first-hand example of this fact.
Portugal – DDDWL
Portugal, on the other hand, have had a torrid time in the tournament and they were lucky to qualify for the knockouts without even winning a single match. They have won just one out of their last five encounters and will definitely want to improve on the record.
Head to head record
- Both the teams have met each other thrice before and Portugals have won all the three of them, scoring six goals in the process.
- The last time these two teams met was in a friendly in June 2013, where Cristiano Ronaldo scored the only goal of the match.
- They have also met each other in the European Championship before, at the Euro 96 in England. Portugal emerged 3-0 victors from the match.
This might just be one of the most fiercely fought matches in the tournament. With both the teams trying to prove their worth, a moment of individual brilliance might be enough to decide the outcome. A win in this match will mean that a comparatively easy opponent in Switzerland or Poland will be waiting for them in the quarterfinals. We predict a 1-0 win for Portugal.