Will Croatia become first time World Cup winners by defeating favourites’ France?
Croatia now have the opportunity to avenge their semi-final defeat to France in 1998 and become a first time World Cup winner. After going the distance in the two previous knockout rounds, the Croats again needed extra-time in the semi-final where they ended the challenge of the Three Lions. By comparison, France came through relatively comfortably in their last 4 clash with Belgium and its this freshness that makes them strong favourites to repeat their 1998 success.
France vs Croatia
Projected goals 1.34 / 0.73
Clean sheet percentages 48% / 26%
To lift the trophy 65% / 35%
Fantasy player to watch – Paul Pogba
Croatia were a different team against England after the interval with the brilliant Luka Modrić pulling this strings in the centre of the park. However, the Real Madrid man is unlikely to get as much time on the ball against France, with N’Golo Kanté almost certain to single him out for some special attention.
This could open the door for Paul Pogba to influence proceedings and it will be a big ask for a jaded Croatian midfield to handle his pace and power. The Manchester United midfielder has quietly been going about his business at the finals and while there may not have been the normal flamboyance associated with him, one cannot argue with the disciplined performances he has put in to benefit his side.
Pogba has some vociferous critics but he may just rise to the occasion on Sunday, making him an attractive proposition for those World Cup fantasy team sheets!
Will France secure their second world title or are Croatia poised to become shock World Cup winners?