|Rashford to Score Anytime||12/5||Coral|
|Both Team to Score||19/20||Bet365|
England go into game two of their UEFA Nations League campaign and are already playing catch-up with favourites Spain out in front of Group A4 having picked-up six points from their first two starts. Gareth Southgate takes his side to Stadion HNK Rijeka where Croatia await.
This will be the second game of the year involving these sides following Croatia’s 2-1 World Cup win, Mandzukic scoring an extra-time clincher after Trippier’s opening goal was canceled out by Perisic. That result helped Vatreni close the gap in the head-to-head stats, England now leading 4-3 with one draw.
Despite Croatia’s stunning run to the final in Russia, that hard-fought win over England was actually their last, losing two and drawing one in their three starts since. Zlatko Dalic’s men were swept aside by France at the Luzhniki Stadium back in July, losing 4-2. That was followed with a 1-1 friendly draw vs Portugal before Spain dealt out a 6-0 beating in this competition last month.
It took The Red Fury just 24 minutes to get their noses in front at the Martinez Valero, Niguez breaking the deadlock. That opened the floodgates, Asensio, Rodrigo, Ramos and Isco taking full advantage, Kalinic suffering an OG. One win in their last half-dozen starts won’t do a lot to inspire confidence in the home win amongst punters.
England’s recent form hasn’t been any better and they travel for this one with two wins, a draw and three defeats in their last six. The Three Lions roared to that stunning 2-0 win over Sweden to reach the semi-final, but they went on to lose their next three.
Beaten by Croatia in the final four, they then lost 2-0 vs Belgium in the third-place play-off. Returning home, the unwanted hat-trick was complete when losing 2-1 when hosting Spain at Wembley, despite Rashford opening the scoring inside 11 minutes.
The away dressing room can take confidence from a friendly win over Switzerland in their most recent start however. Manchester United striker Marcus Rashford was again quickest off the mark, scoring the only goal of the evening at the King Power Stadium. Kyle Walker found the 20-year-old lurking at the back post with an accurate cross and the scorer kept his composure to fire his fifth international goal.
Two sides more than capable of getting the desired result here but we also have a pair desperately out of form following their World Cup exploits, leaving them low on confidence. Past meetings tell us this will be tight, and the betting at the best bookies certainly backs that up with Croatia slight favourites. If you rate the locals’ chances be sure to back them at bet365 where you’ll get a market best price 9/5.
England have won two of their last three vs Croatia, and quite comfortably too. Lampard bagged a double in a 5-1 2009 cheer, Gerrard adding two more before Rooney rounded things off. That emphatic result followed a 4-1 win a year earlier on the road, Walcott helping himself to a treble. The away day is 7/4 at Ladbrokes, a draw 11/5 (bet365).
In the previous eight meetings, both teams have found the net at least once on six occasions. That’s worth noting, especially as a bet on both to score would’ve banked you a return in each of the last four. More of the same is worth a play at Coral’s 19/20 or there’s a bit more to be had when going over 2.5 goals, 13/10 with the same firm.