Croatia vs Slovakia Predictions

  • 18:45
  • Expired
  • Stadion Gradski vrt
Croatia
Slovakia
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Slovakia +2

8/15odds when tipped
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Croatia 1-0

5/1odds when tipped
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Tip Reasoning

  • Slovakia have avoided defeat in two of their three away World Cup qualifiers to date (both draws).
  • Slovakia were four minutes away from getting a 0-0 draw with Croatia when the teams met last month.
  • The underlying stats suggest Slovakia could have won in Croatia and should have won in Russia on Friday.
  • In 2021, Slovakia have only lost one match by more than a goal and that was against Spain in Sevilla at the Euro 2020 Finals.

Falcons will fancy their chances of upset

Slovakia gave Group H leaders Croatia a scare last month, but failed to take their chances in suffering a 1-0 loss, and it appears that a similar story played out when they lost to Russia on Friday too.

An injury-hit Russian line-up held on for a win in Kazan, despite Slovakia having nearly 70% possession, 28 shots, 14 corners and over double the xG of their opponents. They may be a shade unlucky but there’s no denying that they don’t have a top-class international finisher to convert the chances being created and that won’t have changed by the time they face Croatia again on Monday.

The 2018 World Cup finalists need to win in Zagreb because Russia are breathing down their necks for the automatic qualification spot. But Zlatko Dalic was dealt a blow during Friday’s 3-0 win over Cyprus when Mateo Kovacic picked up the yellow card that rules him out of this game.

Handicap option appeals more than skinny home odds

Croatia have been so consistent at home over the past five years that it is so hard to go against them, even if the underlying stats suggest their opponents are worthy of some respect. Backing Slovakia in the double chance market is a tempting option, but we’d rather play it safe and take the visitors +2 on the handicap – which is a slightly better price to Croatia’s match odds.

The Falcons certainly have the defensive stability and structure in midfield to keep this game close, which is the main reasoning behind the selection and the correct score play of 1-0, which mirrors the score of Croatia’s home game against Cyprus earlier this year.

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