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Croatia vs Canada Odds, Picks Prediction | World Cup Match Preview

Croatia vs Canada Odds, Picks Prediction | World Cup Match Preview article feature image
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Visionhaus/Getty. Pictured: Jonathan David.

  • Croatia is favored to beat Canada at the World Cup.
  • The 2018 finalists were held scoreless in their opening match, as were the Canucks.
  • Johnathan Wright breaks down the match below.

Canada vs. Croatia Odds

Sunday, Nov. 27
11 a.m. ET
FS1
Canada Odds +275
Croatia Odds +105
Draw +250
Over/Under 2.5 (+100 / -125)
Both Teams to Score (Yes/No) (-125 / -106)
Odds via bet365. Get up-to-the-minute World Cup odds here.

Canada and Croatia will begin the second matchday of Group F play in search of their first win and goal.

Croatia, a finalist in the 2018 World Cup, saw their opening match in Qatar end in a 0-0 stalemate against Morroco. A win against the North American side would put them in a promising position to advance into the knockout rounds before their final group match against Belgium.

Canada displayed a spirited performance in their opener but were unable to find the back of the net, as Belgium’s end-of-half goal was enough to collect all three points. The Canucks now find themselves in a must-win situation on Sunday, or their first World Cup appearance in three decades will be short-lived.

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Canada are Due For Goals

Canada put themselves on notice with an impressive match against group favorite Belgium. They led the xG battle 2.63-0.77 and outshot the Red Devils 22-7, including a penalty kick in the opening 10 minutes. They became the first team in over 40 years not to score a goal after having over 20 shots and a spot kick in a single match.

In fact, Canada are yet to score a goal at the World Cup, ever. Surely, positive regression is due to set in place for the Canucks against Croatia, right?

Belgium 1-0 Canada: Defeat was cruel on Canada, but Croatia and Morocco certainly won’t be looking forward to facing them. Belgium? They “did a job”.#FIFAWorldCup pic.twitter.com/VOwzBQU6gQ

— Opta Analyst (@OptaAnalyst) November 23, 2022

Head coach John Herdman lined his team up in a 3-4-2-1. A formation, if executed correctly, that is perfect to take down a Croatian side led by one of this generation’s best midfielders, Luka Modric. The formation allows flexibility for the two wing backs and the two attacking midfielders to drop in to absorb pressure and suffocate the middle third of the pitch.

Offensively, with the double pivot in the midfield, Canada can play out from the back and take advantage of the pace they have on the outside with Alphonso Davis.

While it is a safe bet to assume Canada will not find 22 shots against Croatia, they should still be able to find themselves in dangerous positions and, hopefully — for Canada fans — find their first-ever World Cup goal.

Croatia Looking For an Attacking Spark

Croatia extended their unbeaten streak to seven matches with their draw against Morocco. But head coach Zlatko Dalic was still frustrated with his team’s performance, believing they left the remaining two points on the pitch.

The Chequered Ones’ strength and identity lie in the midfield, where they are led by Modric, who partners with Marcelo Brozovic and Mateo Kovacic to form one of the top midfield trios in the competition. They held 65% possession in the fixture.

Despite their dominance on the ball, Croatia’s lack of a No. 9 was prevalent. They were held to just five shots (two on goal) and 0.52 xG. It was their lowest shot total in a single World Cup match. They averaged 16.1 shots per outing in Russia.

Nikola Vlasic, Andrej Kramari and Ivan Persisc were the three that led the attack in Croatia’s 4-3-3, but the three of them are out of form. They have combined for just seven goals in league play through 44 matches. There is no obvious solution for Dalic on how to solve this issue aside from the three being able to start finishing on the setups that come from the midfield.

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Canada vs. Croatia Prediction

This match has turned into an unexpected grudge match after Herdman’s remarks, stating that his side are “going to go and F Croatia.” 

As imagined, Dalić didn’t take the statement lightly and will try to use it as extra motivation for his players. However, with Croatia’s lack of firepower up top and Canada’s ability to absorb pressure and get into dangerous positions, extra motivation will not be enough to get past Canada with all three points.

Take Les Rouges on the spread. 

The Pick: Canada +1 (-138)

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