Croatia Team Guide for the Euro 2021 tournament | The 2018 World Cup runners-up are a far cry from their best
Croatia fans believe their team should be contenders for the European trophy but their recent form suggests otherwise. They played terribly in the Nations League and only won a single game. They only avoided relegation to the lower group thanks to their better goal difference.
- Many players that were part of their 2018 success have since retired. Subasic, Mandzukic, and Rakitic have all left.
- Croatia conceded more goals in the Nations League than any other team except for Iceland.
- In 2020, Croatia only won 2 out of eight games, which is the worst annual result in their history.
Croatia Team Guide: Tactics
Croatia usually plays a 4-3-3 formation where Borna Barišić and Tin Jedvaj provide the width and push up. Ivan Rakitić and Luka Modrić play as number eights. With Rakitić no longer available that role is now given to Kovacic. We have yet to see how the newer players will perform and if the head coach will make further changes as the team has not been performing well at all.
The CSKA Moscow attacking midfielder is enjoying some fantastic form at the moment and is also part of the reason that Rakitić decided to retire. He is not the biggest of players, but his physicality and fitness make him difficult to deal with.
Zlatko Dalić is having a tough time at the moment after Croatia’s terrible performance at the Nations League. The goodwill he garnered after their wonderful performance at the 2018 World Cup has evaporated and it is probably only a matter of time before he will have to leave.
Croatia Team Guide: Player Profile
Luka Modrić is widely considered to be Croatia’s all-time best player. However, his skills are not enough to carry the entire team. Their 2020 form shows that they need to find something extra if they want to get out of the group stage of the European tournament. Group D is not the easiest group but if Croatia plays their best they should not have any problems qualifying to the knockout stages.
Now 35 years old, Dalić will need to manage his fitness and playing time. When Modrić plays he makes the team stronger, but don’t expect him to play every other day for 90 minutes. Like many other players in this competition, it will be the final time Modrić can achieve something special on an international stage.
Croatia Team Guide: Croatia Euro 2021 Odds to win
Even though Croatia was in the 2018 World Cup final, they have lost a lot of form since then. They are not one of the favourites but they are not such a long bet as some of the other teams. A selection of odds is below.
All odds were correct at time of publication on 23/04/21. Odds are subject to change.
Check out our England v Croatia Odds match article to see the best UK bookmaker odds for that match.