On Sunday night, Wales host Croatia in Group E of qualifying for Euro 2020. The clash could prove to be pivotal to deciding qualification in the group.
Wales (Odds of 21/10 for victory)
Wales have endured an inconsistent qualification campaign so far for Euro 2020. In fact, they could not have endured a more inconsistent campaign, picking up two wins, one draw and suffering two defeats too.
The Dragons mixed form has left Ryan Giggs side fourth place in the standings, three points behind Slovakia who occupy the second automatic qualification berth in Group E. They are also seven points behind group leaders and Sunday’s opponents Croatia in the race for qualification.
The home side has not just endured a mixed qualifying campaign for Euro 2020, they have also won just three of their last eight qualifiers for the European Championships dating back to 2015.
Despite their mixed recent record in qualifying for the European Championships, the Dragons are unbeaten in nine home qualifiers, while recording seven victories. They also have a strong defensive record in home qualifiers, conceding just once in their last five games, keeping four clean sheets in the process.
Juventus midfielder Aaron Ramsey missed the 1-1 draw with Slovakia due to injury last time out. However, the home side are hopeful that the former Arsenal star will be fit to return.
Croatia (Odds of 6/4 for victory)
The visitors are unsurprisingly top of the group, three points clear of second-place Slovakia and four points clear of Hungary in third place. Zlatko Dalic’s team kicked off the group as favourites and will be confident of finishing top of the group.
A 3-0 home win over Hungary last time out means that Croatia have now won six of their last eight European Championship qualifiers. It was also the third time in four qualifiers that Croatia had scored two or more goals.
One slight negative for the visitors is their away record in qualifying for the European Championships. They have won just two of their last seven away games in qualifying. Their away qualifiers have been very low-scoring of late, with under 2.5 goals in six of their last eight outings.
Croatia have had the upper hand in games against Wales of late, winning the last three meetings, while scoring twice in each game.
The visitors have a strong squad, but the likes of Andrej Kramaric, Sime Vrsaljko and Marko Pjaca will miss out through injury.
On paper, Croatia have far superior quality in their ranks. The likes of Luka Modric, Ivan Perisic and Ivan Rakitic have been top performers at the highest level for a long time. However, Wales home record and Croatia’s away record put slight doubt in the mind about selecting an away win.
We are going with our gut on this one and backing the away win. Wales have not looked great of late and Croatia have the talent to punish any mistakes. The under 2.5 goals scored looks like a sensible bet.
Verdict: Back the away win at 6/4 and/or under 2.5 goals at odds of 7/10. (All odds are taken from Bet365).[reviewTableLarge ids=”620,639,642″ title=”Best betting sites to place bet on this game are:”]
If you would like a bet on Wales v Croatia, then you can visit our betting page for the best bookmakers to use to place your wager. Also, check out our soccer predictions page for all our latest tips.
Will Croatia strengthen their position at the top of Group E with a victory in Wales?