In a group that features Euro 2020 betting favourites England, the importance of this clash between Croatia and the Czech Republic in Glasgow on June 19 will not be lost on the two teams.
Indeed, it is this game more than any other that is likely to shape how Group D pans out.
That means there will be plenty of pressure on an all involved, and as such you might expect Croatia – given that they played in a World Cup final as recently as 2018 – to have the edge.
The bookmakers certainly seem to agree, although of course we should be careful not to completely write off the Czechs.
So how do we see this game panning out? Well, all will be revealed in the rest of this preview, in which we will examine both teams in more depth and reveal our Croatia vs Czech Republic predictions in due course.
We will close this article with our betting tips for the game, and offer some suggestions as to ways you can live stream the action too.
1. Croatia vs Czech Republic Betting OddsCroatia vs Czech Republic Betting Odds
As soon as you make a World Cup final, there are plenty of expectations that naturally follow and that’s why the Croatia vs Czech Republic betting odds focus on the likelihood of the beaten finalists in Russia prevailing here – they can be backed at 2.0.
But the Czechs qualified well for this tournament and so shouldn’t be completely underestimated at odds of 4.1, while the draw can be backed at 3.1.
2. Croatia vs Czech Republic Preview
There’s no denying it: this is a golden generation for Croatian football.
Modric, Rakitic, Perisic, Lovren- these are players that have been performing in the top echelons of football for a number of years.
Add into the mix an exciting support cast, and it’s no wonder that Croatia did so well in the World Cup and finished top of their qualifying group for Euro 2020.
However, many of these key figures are now entering the autumn of their careers, and this may be the final opportunity they get to win some major silverware.
That won’t be lost on them, and so we’re expecting a committed showing from a solid Croatian squad that has star quality to burn.
The only query about them is goals. Mario Mandzukic retired after the World Cup, and the frontman hasn’t necessarily been replaced as yet. So we’re expecting Croatia to grind out results rather than blow their opposition away.
As for the Czech Republic, not a huge amount is known given that they had fallen off the radar in recent times.
But an easy enough qualification group has helped them to Euro 2020, and that qualification campaign raised both expectations (they beat England 2-1 in one game) and eyebrows (they also lost 0-5 to the English in the reverse game, and 1-2 to Kosovo).
Inconsistency appears to be the name of the game with the Czechs then, and that won’t work well in a major competition against elite opposition.
Looking at their squad, this is an outfit that will have to perform greater than the sum of their parts if they are to have any joy in this European Championship, and forward Patrik Schick will surely be instrumental in any success that they do have.
This Croatia vs Czech Republic preview confirms what we suspected at the start: the Croatians should edge a tight and cagey affair.
3. Croatia vs Czech Republic Betting Tips
Given the odds, there’s not a huge amount of value in simply backing the favourites outright in our Croatia vs Czech Republic betting tips.
And so we’ll have to look for other avenues of attack, and for that we’re going to settle on backing the Under 2.5 Goals market.
As mentioned, Croatia have lost their talisman in Mandzukic, and while there are goals spread throughout this team nobody brings the high expectancy that their former striker delivered.
They will base their success on organisation and solidity, which the Czech Republic – lacking a quality playmaker or creator – will surely find difficult to break down.
As such, we’re expecting Croatia to win a low-scoring contest in Glasgow.
4. Croatia vs Czech Republic Live Stream
As ever, check your local TV listings to see if you can watch this game on your big screen.
If not, there may well be an option of enjoying a Croatia vs Czech Republic live stream – this may be provided by your favourite bookmaker or betting app, too.
Take a look at their live streaming channel for more information.