Published: Wed, July 11, 2018
Sports | By Johanna Francis

Croatia v England: Why Wednesday must be Harry Kane's day

Croatia v England: Why Wednesday must be Harry Kane's day

Gareth Southgate and England are ready to face the music.

Croatia has come into existence as a country for example and the Three Lions opposition have also reached a semi-final in that time, losing to hosts and eventual winners France at the 1998 World Cup. England are favourites at $2.4 compared to Croatia's 3.65.

"I think Raheem has been fundamental to the way that we have played - his movement, the positions he takes up, his pressing of the ball, his work-rate for the team, the winning of free-kicks and corners, his speed to stretch teams".

Then, a disappointing 1-0 defeat by Belgium proved a blessing in disguise for England.

Modric started that match at Wembley and remains integral to Croatia's game 11 years later, the captain having been widely hailed as one of the best players at the finals in Russian Federation.

In keeping with his even-handed and calm style, Southgate said his team were neither complacent nor too pumped up for Wednesday's clash at the Luzhniki Stadium, England's first World Cup semi-final since 1990.

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"We have strength and we're united on the pitch", the Barcelona star told FIFA TV. "It is a game that is very evenly matched, we know what we want to do and we have to focus on our preparation and make sure that we control the controllables as we have attempted to do for every game", the manager said. Luka Modric and Vedran Corluka have both passed the 100-cap mark, while Rakitic and Mario Mandzukic are closing in on their centuries.

With an average age of 26, England is one of the youngest teams at the World Cup. - England has scored 11 goals at this year's World Cup, tying its record from the victorious 1966 tournament.

Lovren continued: "I have all respect for Harry Kane".

England hasn't played in the semifinals of a major tournament since Southgate's penalty kick at Wembley was saved by Andreas Koepke 22 years ago, and Andrea Moeller put the next kick over David Seaman and under the crossbar.

"I cannot imagine what will happen if Croatia were to win the World Cup, I really can't".

"Of course, it's not the same if you play two 90-minute matches and two 120-minute matches, but I still believe we have had ample time to recover and we are professional enough to know who needs what with what kind of recovery".

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