World Cup 2018, England vs Croatia: 4 players from each team to look out for
In the past 7 times that these two nations have met each other, England have won 4 times and Croatia have won twice. Yet, none of those games will be as crucial as the one on Wednesday.
To be played at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow, the second semi-final of the World Cup will see two of the most talented teams of the tournament fight it out in a mouthwatering tie. We take a look at 4 players from each team who would be vital for their side.
Gareth Southgate’s side have scored the second most goals in the tournament so far, 11, tied with Russia, but have also let in only 4. They were impressive against Colombia, showing a gutsy side to their youth and also impressed with their ruthlessness against Sweden.
In the tournament so far, England have 70 shots, 19 of them on target. Their goals have come from 5 different players. Against Croatia, though, they have to be at their best and will rely on the following 4 players
Maguire has been the find of the World Cup so far. He has been a rock in the English defence and has brought the best out of John Stones. In the 5 games he played so far, Maguire has hardly put a foot wrong.
He has covered 43 kilometres, attempted 303 passes, completing 276 of them. He has had 7 attempts on goal, with 2 of them on goal and has scored 1 goal so far. He has 3 tackles and 11 clearances and has recovered the ball 38 times. He will be relishing the prospect of facing Mandzukic, quietly confident of his abilities.
The Manchester United midfielder has built a place for himself in this English side and has hit the ground running. He has already scored a stunner of a goal and so far has 12 attempts on goal, with 2 of them on target.
He has covered 46.1 kilometres in the 4 games he played, full of running and never giving up. He has attempted 149 passes and completed 140 of them. With 4 deliveries and 3 dribbles into the penalty box and 2 attempted crosses, Lingard will be ready to give Rakitic a hard time.