|England to Win||4/5||Paddy Power|
|’No’ on Both Teams To Score||4/5||Paddy Power|
|England to win 1-0||6/1||888Sport|
England welcome World Cup runners-up Croatia to Wembley on Sunday afternoon for a vital UEFA Nations League match that’ll see the winners storm to the top of Group A4, bypassing pre-tournament favourites Spain in the process.
The Three Lions have failed to set things alight in this three-team pool so far and go into the weekend showing an even split of results, lose-draw-win, leaving them two points off the pace.
However, Croatia’s dramatic 3-2 victory over Spain on Thursday night has blown the group wide open, with all three teams still capable of finishing top of Group A4, meaning it’s a winner takes all scenario at Wembley on Sunday.
Gareth Southgate’s side followed on from Russia with a third loss of the summer when losing their opening Nations League match 2-1 at home to Spain, following defeat at the hands of Croatia in the semi-finals of the World Cup and Belgium in a third-place play-off.
Rashford had the locals ahead that evening when scoring inside 11 minutes but that advantage was immediately cut-out, Niguez firing an equaliser on 13, before Rodrigo grabbed what proved to be the winner on 32.
A last-minute leveller was ruled out for a foul by Welbeck on De Gea but many in the stadium thought the decision rather harsh.
A draw certainly wouldn’t have been an unfair result that evening, and it was a share of the spoils next time when held to a goalless finish in Rijeka.
A night of wasted opportunities meant England had taken just one point from the first six available and fans feared the worst heading to Seville for game three.
They needn’t have worried as what they got was a convincing win over Spain that’ll live long in the memory.
A double from Sterling sandwiched a Rashford strike and that was more than enough to keep a second-half fightback at bay, Alcacer and Ramos achieving little more than to force an interesting finish.
Since upsetting the odds to claim a silver medal back in the summer, Croatia seem to have struggled with a World Cup hangover, managing just two wins in five games since losing 4-2 to France at Luzhniki Stadium in July.
One of those wins was a rather unconvincing 2-1 win over Jordan in an international friendly in front of their own fans last month.
Despite being tipped to breeze past an opponent ranked outside the top 100 teams in the world by FIFA, The Blazers had to hold on for a nervy 2-1.
Vida and Mitrovic scored either side of the interval but a 73rd minute response from Abu Seif and late pressure from the visitors made for an uncomfortable finish.
Before Thursday, Croatia hadn’t been any better on Nations League duty and started with a woeful 6-0 defeat at the hands of Spain at the Martinez Valero, The Red Fury enjoying five different scorers, as well as an own-goal from Kalinic.
A rude awakening and the general feeling at the final whistle was it could’ve been worse, the victors mercifully taking their foot off the gas in the closing stages.
That defence was tightened just in time for the visit of England in game two and they hung on for a point in a match played out behind closed doors, making for an eerily silent atmosphere.
England twice hit the post and saw Rashford pass-up several chances at revenge. On the balance of play the home side on the night could think themselves rather fortunate not to have lost.
The Croats did bounce back with a late win over Spain in Thursday though, showing the type of mettle that turned them into a powerhouse in world football as Tin Jedvaj’s injury time winner threw this group wide open.
It’s worth remembering that the away side have only scored against Spain in this competition while England have kept a clean-sheet in two of their last three. No both teams to score is also 4/5 at Paddy Power.