All you need to know: Croatia v Canada
Check out everything you need to know about Croatia v Canada.
Croatia vs Canada: Line-ups
Set to Be a Tight Contest
Zlatko Dalic has admitted that his side “lacked courage” in their opening stalemate with the African nation, but that point is good enough to see them occupy second place in the Group F standings after one game, edging out third-placed Morocco on fair play points for the time being.
Shaking hands on a point with Morocco did at least stretch the Chequered Ones’ unbeaten streak in all tournaments to seven matches, while they have only suffered one defeat in their last 17 since Euro 2020, highlighting their stellar defensive acumen that has seen them concede just twice in their last 540 minutes of football.
Nevertheless, the Canucks could take plenty of encouragement from their performance against the golden generation of Belgium, although that result already leaves them bottom of the standings in Group F, and their hopes of a last-16 berth will be dashed if results do not go their way this week.
Thirty-six years on from making their only previous appearance at the World Cup, Canada remain winless and goalless at the tournament after four matches – already the most of any nation in history – and Herdman is now out to ensure that his side do not match El Salvador’s record of six straight losses.
Posting just three shots on target from their 22 attempts against Belgium shows the area that Herdman must address, but the Canada boss has controversially warned that his crop will “F Croatia” as they prepare to meet the 2018 runners-up for the very first time.
Canada certainly demonstrated a greater sense of attacking desire than Croatia did on matchday one, but any similar sort of profligacy will prove fatal versus a steadfast Chequered Ones’ defence. Any neutral fans hoping for a glut of goals should look elsewhere, and another goalless draw is not beyond the realm of possibility here, but Dalic’s side can stand firm at the back and win the midfield battle to edge a close contest.