Tournament: World Cup
Stage: Semi Finals
Referee: Cuneyt Cakir
Match Date: Wednesday, July 11, 2018
DID YOU KNOW?
This is the eighth meeting between England and Croatia, with England winning four of those games, with one draw and two Croatia wins; six of the previous seven games have also been played on a Wednesday.
England and Croatia have met once before at a major tournament – England won 4-2 in a group stage match at Euro 2004.
England are competing in their third World Cup semi-final; they won 2-1 against Portugal in 1966 on their way to winning the tournament, but lost on penalties to Germany in 1990.
Croatia have had eight different scorers at the 2018 World Cup – only Belgium have had more different players find the net (9).
England have not beaten two European nations in a single World Cup since 1982, when they beat Czechoslovakia and France.
England have scored 11 goals at this year’s World Cup, a joint-record along with the 11 they scored in their victorious 1966 tournament.
Croatia have reached the World Cup semi-finals for the second time since their first World Cup participation in 1998, which is more than the likes of Argentina, England, Italy, Portugal and Spain (1 each). The only European nations with more semi-final appearances in this period (inc. 2018) are Germany (4), France (3) and Netherlands (3).
Croatia reached the semi-finals via penalty shootout victories in the last 16 against Denmark and quarter-final against Russia – the only other team to win two penalty shootouts in a single World Cup were Argentina in 1990 (against Yugoslavia and Italy).
England had 15 shots on target in their first two 2018 World Cup matches but have attempted just six in their three games since – England had eight shots on target against Portugal in the 1966 semi-final, and four in 1990’s semi-final against Germany.
Croatia have only lost one of their six knockout matches at the World Cup, losing to France in the 1998 semi-final.
Harry Kane has scored on six of the seven days of the week for England, with Wednesday the only day he hasn’t scored on. Should he score, he’ll become just the third player to score on all seven days of the week for England, after Wayne Rooney and Frank Lampard.
Mario Mandzukic assisted Andrej Kramaric’s goal against Russia in the quarter-final – he has been involved in four goals at the World Cup finals for Croatia (3 goals, 1 assist), with only Davor Suker involved in more (6).
Eight of England’s 11 goals at the 2018 World Cup have been scored via set-pieces – since 1966, the only team to equal that number in a single World Cup tournament are Portugal in 1966 (also eight goals).
Croatia scored two headers in their last match against Russia – only one of their previous 29 World Cup goals was scored via a header.