Russia - Croatia: Quarter-Final Predictions, Odds and Best Bets

Best bet: Croatia to win 1-0. A €100 bet nets you €400. Best bet: Draw 0-0. A €100 bet nets you €600. Best bet: Draw 1-1. A $100 bet nets you $500. Best bet: Russia to win 2-1. A $100 bet nets you $1400. Best bet: Croatia to win 2-1. A ₦10000 bet nets you ₦75000. The second quarterfinal of the FIFA 2018 World Cup, after Uruguay-France will be that between Russia and Croatia which will take place on Saturday, July 7 at 20:00 (CET).

The FIFA 2018 World Cup in Russia continues to provide us with suspense and (above all) surprises.

After the elimination of Argentina and Portugal, 2 days ago was in fact the turn of Spain, one of the favourites for the final victory.

The Spaniards have fallen at the end of the penalty shootout against Russia, which saw the host nation advancing to the quarterfinals.

Penalties that were decisive also for Denmark, a defeat against Croatia just after the penalty shoot-out.

In the last three matches between Russia and Croatia, the records are in favour of Croatia, with a win and two draws.

The Croatians come to this quarterfinal with an unbeaten record, after the three group victories and a draw during the 90 minutes against Denmark (won after a penalty shot out).

Russia can boast a more prolific attack, with nine goals against eight Croatians, but a worse defensive record, with five goals conceded against Croatia’s two.

Team Forms and Recent Results

Without a doubt, Russia has been one of the positive surprises of this World Cup so far.

After the great start with the 5-0 win on the first day of the groups against Saudi Arabia and the 3-1 convincing win in their second appearance against Egypt, the Russians only fell in the last group match against Uruguay.

The disappointment lasted only a few days, as yesterday Cherchesov's team took home the quarterfinals, eliminating one of the top favourites for the final victory, Spain.

Although Croatia will not be a simple opponent to face in these quarters, now Russia can seriously raise some hope and belief in reaching the final in Moscow.

Croatia are not as a real surprise because of the talented squad at the disposal of coach Dalic.

However, Croatia have done better than pre-world cup expectations.

After practically dominating Group D, finishing with three wins out of three and winning the group, Croatia defeated Denmark and advance to the quarterfinals.

They are now being considered as one of the favourites for the final victory.

Despite the effort made against the Danes, the Croats have in fact shown quality and solidity, sending a clear message to the other contenders.

Although on paper, compared to Spain, Russia should be a smoother opponent, the Croatians will still have to be careful not to underestimate the host Nation.

Russia vs Croatia - Probable formations

Coach Cherchesov is likely to change formation compared to that seen against Spain.

He is expected to field a 3-5-1-1 formation, slightly more offensive.

Among the confirmed is the hero of the Spain game Akinfeev, with Kutepov, Ignashevich and Kudryashov in defence.

In midfield the central trio of Samedov, Kuziaev and Zobnin , with Mario Fernandes and Zhirkov on the wings.

On the three-quarter Golovin supporting the forward Dzyuba.

Unlike Russia, Croatia should instead field the same 4-2-3-1 formation, with Vrsaljko-Lovren-Vida and Strinic in defence, Subasic.

Rakitic and Brozovic in midfield and Rebic-Modric-Perisic to support Mandzukic.

Russia (3-5-1-1): Akinfeev; Kutepov, Ignashevich, Kudryashov; Mario Fernandes, Samedov, Kuziaev, Zobnin, Zhirkov; Golovin; Dzyuba. Coach: Cherchesov

Croatia (4-2-3-1): Subasic; Vrsaljko, Lovren, Vida, Strinic; Brozovic, Rakitic; Rebic, Modric, Perisic; Mandzukic. Coach: Dalic

Our predictions

Our algorithm has Croatia as narrow favourites to win this match at 37% probability against a 36% chance of a draw.

A Russia win is at 27%. Even though Croatia may not be one of world football’s power football nations, they are the better team and should advance at odds of around 2.20.

However, we should never underestimate the host nation. Bookmakers have them listed at the realistic odds of 3.80 to advance.

Score predictions are 0-1 win for Croatia or draw results of 0-0 and 1-1.

REMI

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