Euro 2016: Croatia vs Portugal preview

Impressive Group D winners Croatia will take on Portugal on Saturday in what probably is the most interesting match of the day. Croatia have never managed to beat Portugal, but there have only been three previous meetings between the two nations. However, Portugal have won all three without conceding a single goal. The most recent clash was a friendly match on neutral ground in 2013, when Cristiano Ronaldo scored the only goal of the match for Portugal.

After a narrow 1-0 win over Turkey and a 2-2 draw against the Czech Republic, Croatia stunned reigning European champions Spain with a 2-1 victory. The result allowed Croatia to finish top of the group, one point ahead second-placed Spain. Croatia are on a 10-match unbeaten run, with five wins out of seven games this year. Stars Luka Modric and Mario Mandzukic are both doubtful due to injuries, they have already skipped the match against Spain. Another worry for Croatia is that eight of their players are just one yellow card away from suspension.

Portugal have finished their group stage campaign unbeaten. That sounds good, but it's only half of the truth. The other half sounds a lot worse: Cristiano Ronaldo and company have not managed to win any of their three group matches. The finished third in the group after three consecutive draws, but that was good enough to qualify among the four best third-placed teams. Raphael Guerreiro might miss out again, but Portugal will be hoping that Ronaldo will keep the goals coming after having scored twice against Hungary.

Probable line-ups:

Croatia: Subasic - Srna, Corluka, Vida, Strinic - Rog, Badelj - Brozovic, Rakitic, Perisic - Kalinic

Portugal: Patricio - Vieirinha, Pepe, Carvalho, Eliseu - Mario, Moutinho, Gomes - Nani, Ronaldo, Quaresma

My prediction: 1-1 draw (after 90 minutes); Croatia to qualify

Here are the odds for the match at Bet365:

Croatia win - 2.63
Draw - 3.10
Portugal win - 3.10

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Members Comments

  • Serbia nik92


    Croatia has excellent individuals, and they look great together as a team, I hope that their best player, Luka Modric will be ready for this match, he is an important factor and means a lot to the team. They performance against Spain showed that they are ready for high goals. Honestly, Portugal disappointed, they failed in this tournament. I expect goals tonight, some of my predictions is 2:1 for Croatia.

  • Serbia Milaneli


    Derby of the first day of Euro2016 knock out phase. On the one side we have Croatians who really impressed everyone in the group stages. They have been dark horses before tournament started, but now, with this bracket, they can go as far as finals. They are favorites in this matchup for sure. Portugal has disappointed a lot. On the paper they had easier group, but failed to get a single win vs Austria, Iceland and Hungary. I just can't see them winning today. CR7 would have to preform a match of the season in order to compete with Croatian warriors.

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