Preview & Betting Tip
Croatia - Serbia This is definitely one of the most interesting matches of the fifth round of qualifications for the World Cup in Brazil because two neighbours will meet, that on top of the great rivalries in the field had a very turbulent past in the political scene. Otherwise, Croatian and Serbia have met only twice, in the qualification for Euro 2000, when Serbs together with Montenegrins played under the name of Yugoslavia and won the first place in the group. Then they played two draws, 0:0 in Belgrade and 2:2 Zagreb. Begins: 22.03.2013 – 18:00 CET
Of course that this is an ideal opportunity for Croats to retaliate, especially as it would with a win against Serbia kicked it out from the race for top two places in the Group A. The Croatians with 10 points currently share the first place with the selection of Belgium, while Serbia is only the third with six points. And speaking of Belgium, we must emphasize that it was the Croats who against them played the only draw in the first four rounds of qualifications, in an away game in Brussels. On the other hand, they won twice against Macedonia and at home against Wales, while it should be noted that in February this year in a friendly trial with South Korea Croatians won with high 4-0. It is certain that these results raised even more the self-confidence ahead of this great duel with Serbia, in which coach Stimac can count on almost all of the best players. It in fact means that the starting lineup should be almost the same as the one that has won against Wales, with one possible alternation in the attack where speedy Olic could get an advantage over Jelavic and Eduardo.
Probable lineups Croatia: Pletikosa – Srna, Lovren, Simunic, Strinic – Rakitic, Badelj, Modric, Kranjcar – Mandzukic, Olic
Unlike the Croatian, Serbian selection in the last two rounds of qualification has suffered defeats, the first one at home from Belgium with 3-0 and then in an away game against Macedonia with 1-0. In this way the selector Mihailovic players have completely spoiled the impression after winning four points from the first two rounds, and automatically put themselves in a very unpleasant position. And that simply means that they now need to win in Zagreb to get back into the game for the first two places in the group, which is realistically a really hard thing to expect. However, in Serbian camp they still hope to make a big surprise. The ground for the hopes are recent victories in friendly matches against Chile and Cypress and fact that they will treated as outsiders, so with one disciplined game can reach in the end a positive result. However, on the opposite side is the extremely strong Croatia that can hardly wait the game against them, and which is now in the top form. We believe that Serbia will play somewhat defensively and with the aim to take home one point. Let us say that this match due to injuries will miss striker Sulejmani and midfielder Basta.
Probable lineups Serbia: Stojkovic – Ivanovic, Nastasic, Bisevac, Kolarov – Petrovic, Kuzmanovic – Tadic, Djuricic, Tosic – Djordjevic
Croatia – Serbia Pick
Despite the strong nationalistic feelings because of which the game itself might fall into the background, we decided that in this duel tip on Croats, who in addition of the home-field advantage have currently a lot more qualitative and experienced team than the neighbours from Serbia.
Better's Tip: 1