Argentina vs Croatia Match Report: World Cup 2018 – Nizhny Novgorod Stadium – Group D clash – June 21, 2018
Argentina vs Croatia Result: Argentina 0, Croatia 3
Croatia became the fourth team to qualify for the Round of 16 in the WC 2018 after they demolished favorites Argemtina 3-0 in a Group D encounter at the Nizhny Novgorod Stadium. The World-Cup runners-up with just a point from their 2 games thus find themselves on the brink of elimination and having to depend on the outcomes of other Group games (e.g. Nigeria v Iceland) to stay alive in the tournament.
Argentina coach Jorge Sampaoli's decision to go with just 3 defenders instead of four backfired as the Croatians made constant inroads into the Argentine box with great ease.
It was during such a move that goal-keeper Willy Caballero accidentally gave the ball to Ante Rebic who volleyed it over the custodian's head to give the Croatians their first goal in the 53rd minute. Much before that in a barren first half, Ivan Perisic, Mario Mandzukic and Rebic all had excellent chances to score and put Croatia ahead.
Argentina were toothless in their attacks with Lionel Messi and Sergio Aguero looking clueless upfront. In one of his rare attempts at the goal, Messi had his close-range effort blocked by Barcelona team-mate Ivan Rakitic.
Another effort by Maximiliano Meza on goal was dealt with by Croatia’s goalkeeper Danijel Subasic without much trouble.Apart from these, the Albiceleste had very little to show in a game where ironically they started as clear favourites.
The Croatians built up pressure in the 2nd half culminating into Luka Modric's goal. Modric took possession of the ball at about 25 yards from the Argentine goal, tricked center-back Nicolas Otamendi with a drop of his shoulder, shifted the ball to the right and curled in a wicked right-footer into the bottom right of the net. It was an incredible goal to make it 2-0 for the Croatians and put the match beyond the reach of the South Americans.
The Croatians twisted the knife further into an already wounded Argentine side a minute during injury time. Rakitic blazed down the middle, his shot effectively parried by Caballero but the shot deflected from the Argentine goalie to Mateo Kovacic.
Kovacic rolled the ball back to Rakitic who slammed it into an empty net with Caballero completely out of position. 3-0 to Croatia and the Argentines' World Cup dream now hangs by a thread.
The Albiceleste face Nigeria on Tuesday to decide their fate in Russia 2018. But by then, the match could very well become inconsequential for them.
Free Bookmaker Bets
New Players Only. Minimum stake £10, minimum odds 1/2, stake not returned. 1 X wagering the winnings from the free bet. Wagering occurs from real balance first. Wagering requirement is calculated on bonus bets only, wagering starts from real funds. Free bet is valid for 7 Days from issue. Full T&C's apply18+, T & C's Apply, gambleaware.co.uk.New customer only, Max one £10 free bet, Qualifying bets must be placed at odds of 2.0 (1.1) or Greater, Paid as bonus token with min odds reg, T&C Apply. 18+ only.New customers only. Min Deposit £10. Deposit & bonus amount must be wagered 6 times (min odds 4/5) prior to withdrawing bonus funds and any winnings. Wins from real money bets withdrawable at any time. Bonus on sports betting only. T&Cs apply. 18+, T & C's Apply, Begambleaware.orgNew Players Only. Minimum stake $/£/€10, minimum odds 1.5, stake not returned. 1 X wagering the winnings from the free bet. Wagering occurs from real balance first. Wagering requirement is calculated on bonus bets only, wagering starts from real funds. Free bet is valid for 7 Days from issue. Full Terms Apply. T & C Apply, 18+, gambleaware.co.ukNew customers only. Turnover Requirements are x 7 of your deposit and bonus amount. The bonus expires after 30 days. 18+ BeGambleAware. Full terms apply.T & C Apply, 18+, gambleaware.co.ukNew customers only. Expires 31/12/19. Qualifying bet £10 on any sports double within 48 hours of registration - Min odds 1.7 per selection. Max free bet £10 to be used at odds 1.7 and above per selection. Free bets issued after qualifying bet is settled and expire after 7 days. Skrill and Neteller deposits excluded. 18+ BeGambleAware. Full terms apply.New customers only. Max one £10 free bet, Qualifying bets must be placed at odds of 1/1 or greater, paid as bonus token with min odds required. T&C's apply. 18+.18+, first deposit only, T&Cs apply. Opt-in required. Deposits with Skrill, PayPal, Neteller and Paysafecard not eligible. Casino bonus: min. £10, max. £100. Bonus/free spins winnings wagering requirement: x35. Max. bonus bet: £5, can vary. Free sports bet: min. deposit and stake £20 (min. odds 2.0). Credited after all qualifying bets settled. begambleaware.orgNew customers only. Valid once per customer. Cash released in £5 instalments per £100 qualifying turnover. 30 days from reg to fulfil offer. min qualifying odds 1.6, Skrill deposits excluded. 18+ only. BeGambleAware Place 3x £10+ bets at 2.0 (EVENS) or higher and get 1x £10 Free Bet to use on any in-play market. 7 day Expiry. Free Bet limited to certain markets. Must accept pop-up when prompted after qualifying bets settle. 18+. 1 per customer. Full T&Cs apply.18+, Full T & C's Apply, gambleaware.co.uk.
100% up to£10 Free Bet Plus 10 Free Spins
[excerptlist num=3 cat='World Cup' display='Vertical' ]