WORLD CUP PREVIEW

AUTHOR: Star Sports Content

WORLD CUP PREVIEW Sun: Croatia v Canada

Despite sitting bottom of Group F after the first round of fixtures, Canada will be buoyed by their performance against Group favourites Belgium. John Herdman’s charges created a whole host of chances against the Red Devils, and will count themselves seriously hard done by not to have come away from the game with anything on the board.

What they will have taken away though, is confidence. They limited Belgium to few chances, and created so many in attack that a win by two clear goals wouldn’t have flattered them. Their opponents on Sunday can boast no such confidence after their first game however. Despite being favourites coming into it, Croatia found Morocco to be too stern a test to break down, with chances coming at a premium. Perhaps most concerning was the role of Luka Modric, who was seemingly a sole pivot in possession, dropping deep between centre backs to try and initiate attacks.

That role meant Croatia lacked creativity in more dangerous areas, and they’ll need to make adjustments if they’re to overcome an impressive Canadian side. What will work in their favour is that Canada need points on the board, and are naturally more inclined to be attacking than Morocco were. That could open up plenty of opportunities for a Croatia side that’s still packed with talent. For that reason I like them to score first, and with Nikola Vlasic coming off injured in the opener, I think Andrej Kramaric at 17/4 looks the best bet.

HEAD-TO-HEAD
First meeting between sides

CROATIA
NOV 2022 WORLD CUP Morocco 0-0 Croatia
NOV 2022 INTERNATIONAL FRIENDLY Saudi Arabia 0-1 Croatia
SEP 2022 NATIONS LEAGUE Austria 1-3 Croatia
SEP 2022 NATIONS LEAGUE Croatia 2-1 Austria
JUN 2022 NATIONS LEAGUE France 0-1 Croatia

CANADA
NOV 2022 WORLD CUP Belgium 1-0 Canada
NOV 2022 INTERNATIONAL FRIENDLY Japan 1-2 Canada
NOV 2022 INTERNATIONAL FRIENDLY Bahrain 2-2 Canada
SEP 2022 INTERNATIONAL FRIENDLY Canada 0-2 Uruguay
SEP 2022 INTERNATIONAL FRIENDLY Qatar 0-2 Canada

It’s difficult to ignore how flat Croatia looked against Morocco though, and how impressive Canada were in their opener, for that I reason I’d like to take the Croats on despite being favourites. In the Double Chance market you can get Canada or Draw at 3 / 4 – I think that represents some value given the Canadians will bank on Belgium beating Morocco and knowing that a point will give them something to play for on the final day with two teams on a point and Croatia on two with Belgium to play.
It’s also worth noting that Canada’s underlying attacking numbers were extremely good from their game against Belgium, suggesting that level of performance is replicable once again and that goals could well flow if they pick up where they left off. You can get Over 2.5 goals at 11/10 if you fancy the Canadians to find their shooting boots.

Those are some short prices though, so it’s only right I try and find a bit of a longer one too – watching the Canadians take on Belgium it was difficult to ignore the talent of Tajon Buchanan on the right wing. His attacking prowess was obvious, but a couple of minor details stood out – the main one of those being an air of petulance in duels with his opposition full back. He was warned a few times by the referee without being booked, but he has 4 yellow cards in 12 appearances for Club Brugge this season. That’s not insignificant for a winger, and you can get him at 15/4 to be booked with starsports.bet.

DANIEL BUTLER


RECOMMENDED BETS

BACK Double Chance – Canada or Draw 2pts at 3/4 (Latest Star Price ? CLICK TO BET NOW)
BACK Over 2.5 Goals 2pts at 11/10 (Latest Star Price ? CLICK TO BET NOW)


PROFIT/LOSS (WORLD CUP 2022): LOSS 26.18 points (after matches on Sat 26 Nov)
(Will include returns from both the OUTRIGHT and SPECIALS previews too)


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