Croatia and Nigeria will hit it off on Saturday, as the two teams will fight for a good start. Croatia are without a doubt the better team here, and they should be able to follow France to the next round. However, both Nigeria and Iceland are really dangerous sides. Nigeria have a lot of players that are playing in the Premier League, and their mix of strength and speed just might cause problems here. World Cup Croatia vs Nigeria Spread and Prediction.
Date/Time: 6-16-2018, 15:00 EDT
Spread: Nigeria +0.75
Total: 2.25 Goals
Croatia did not have an easy job at all in the World Cup Qualifiers, but eventually finished at the 2nd spot of Group I (6-2-2). However, that group lacked a major name, as it featured Iceland, Ukraine, Turkey, Finland and Kosovo. Croatia didn’t have it easy and were actually in danger of missing out. They had an easy job in the playoffs against Greece, winning by 1-4 at home before a goal-less draw in Greece. Croatia’s highlight was back in 1998 when they finished at the 3rd spot. They have some top-class players in their squad, like Ivan Rakitic, Luka Modric, Mario Mandzukic and Inter Milan’s Ivan Perisic among others.
On the other hand, Nigeria have been consistently participating in the World Cup in the past two decades. Since their debut in 1994 in USA they have only missed to qualify once and have produced some really quality players. This time around they have a lot of players who are playing in England, like Obi Mikel, Victor Moses, Ndidi and Iwobi. However, they do lack a proper goalkeeper, as their main option is a 19-year-old who plays for Deportivo La Corunia. Moreover, their defense is not anything special, as they do tend to concede a lot. They did a great job in the African qualifiers, topping Goup B (4-0-2) that also featured Zambia, Cameroon and Algeria.
Croatia have some awesome players in their starting line-up, from the goalkeeper up to their offensive line. However, they have yet to convince us that they can make a deep run in the tournament.
Nigeria have a lot of physical players in their squad, a lot of talent and a lot of speed. However, their defensive line will surely be exposed in this match. Croatia will not have an easier match in the group, so a win here is a must.
World Cup Croatia vs Nigeria Prediction: Croatia -0.75 (-105)
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World Cup Croatia vs Nigeria Spread and Prediction
Paulie covers the following leagues :
Major League Soccer (MLS)
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