Just two more steps, then Lionel Messi’s chance to touch the elusive golden trophy is in front of him. Argentina’s mission to regret 36 years. Croatia will not leave. They can also be witnesses of history. The team is on the brink of another dream final with fond memories of losing to Messi at the World Cup in Russia.
The result of the match will be known at the end of the match, but before that, we have come up with predictions based on the ability and recent form of the two teams. Besides, the possible XI and formation of the two teams are also highlighted for the readers of Upodesh.com
How many times do Argentina vs Croatia face off?
In total, Argentina and Croatia have met 5 times. Where both teams won two. A draw has been made in one.
This tournament is the last World Cup of Lionel Messi’s career. So it is more important for Messi. Also, Argentina’s mission is to break the title drought after 36 years.
Albiceleste last won the title in 1986 under legendary Diego Maradona.
After that, in 1990 Maradona and in 2014 under the leadership of Lionel Messi played the final but lost to Germany each time and the dream of the title was dashed.
Argentina has not lost in the semi-finals in the history of the World Cup
Argentina-USA, (World Cup Uruguay, 1930)
As surprising as it sounds, the United States were considered by many to be the favorites for the World Cup in Uruguay. They were ahead in the last four battle before entering the field. However, the United States lost to Argentina in the semi-finals with a big margin of 6-1 goals. Luis Monti, Alejandro Skopje, Guillermo Stabile and Carlos Pecusay scored for Argentina.
Argentina-Belgium (Mexico World Cup, 1986)
Argentina won 2-0 in the semi-final against Belgium in a unique display of football by Diego Maradona. Maradona scored two goals in the 52nd and 63rd minutes of the match. Maradona had the best single performance in World Cup history. Argentina won the World Cup.
Argentina-Italy (Italy World Cup, 1990)
Argentina drew 1-1 in the semi-final against Italy. However, they won 4-3 in the tribreaker thanks to the heroics of Argentinian goalkeeper Goicochia. However, they lost 1-0 to Germany in the 1990 World Cup final.
Argentina-Netherlands (World Cup Brazil, 2014)
The semi-final with the Netherlands was goalless for 120 minutes. Messi was flawless in the entire match against the Netherlands. However, the goalkeeper Sergio Romero became Goicochia that day. After all the great saves, he blocked two shots in the tiebreaker. That opens the door to the final. Like the 1990 World Cup, Seva also missed out on the title by losing to Germany.
Tuesday, December 13, 1 pm Bangladesh time
Against Croatia, two fullbacks, Marcos Acuna and Gonzalo Montiel, are missing from Argentina due to suspension. There are also concerns over midfielder Alejandro Gomez’s game, with a minor injury. However, considering the importance of the match, the Sevilla star can be seen as a substitute.
Midfielder Rodrigo de Paul could not play the entire match against the Netherlands as he was not fully fit due to injury. Although there is a possibility of starting in this match, there is concern about being able to play the whole game. Another star Angel Di Maria has also recovered. As a result, Scaloni can also keep him in the starting eleven.
On the other hand, Croatia will be very dependent on these aspects. Dalich is getting a full strength team in this very important fight. He has no card ban or injury problem in his team.
Argentina Vs Croatia Live
Lionel Messi is only two matches away from fulfilling his dream. Needless to say, he will jump with maximum in this match. Croatia’s defense will face a tough test if they can keep up the rhythmic dribbling and hair-raising passing. Di Maria can also be an X-factor if he returns to the starting XI after recovering from injury. Durbar has always been a winger in big matches. If so, Albiceleste’s attack will be stronger. Fans will also have an extra eye on two young Turks, Hulian Alvarez and Enzo Fernandez. Goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez will also be under pressure.
Luka Modric needs to play one of the best matches of his life for Croatia to succeed. However, he is in a great rhythm throughout the event. Apart from attacking, the Real Madrid star will also look to score goals. Argentina could be in danger if Ivan Perisic can improve in goal. A lot will depend on goalkeeper Dominik Livakovic in this match as well.
Argentina: (4-3-3) Emiliano Martinez (goalkeeper), Nahuel Molina, Nicolas Tagliafico, Nicolas Otamendi, Cristian Romero, Rodrigo Di Paul, Alexis McAllister, Enzo Fernandez, Lionel Messi, Julián Alvarez and Angel Di Maria.
Croatia: (4-3-3) Dominik Livakovic (goalkeeper), Josko Guardiol, Dejan Lovren, Josip Juranovic, Borna Sosa, Luka Modric, Mateo Kovacic, Marcelo Brozovic, Ivan Perisic, Andrej Kramaric and Mario Pasalic.
Argentina will be ahead in strength and tradition. Messi alone can make the difference. If the youth can shine with him, Croatia can see the terrible Argentina. However, the European team has been playing great mathematical football in recent times. They are still undefeated in the tournament. Albiceleste have no choice but to give their best to break their defence. But it goes without saying that the fight is going to be tough.
Argentina 1-1 Croatia
Argentina 4-3 Croatia
1. Argentina and Croatia have met five times so far. There is no one behind, both teams have two wins each. The other match was a draw.
2. These two teams have met twice in the World Cup so far. Albiceleste won the first match 1-0 in 1998, but Messi lost 3-0 in the last encounter in the 2018 World Cup.
3. With this, Argentina is playing in the semi-finals of the Bishcup for the sixth time. Germany has reached the semis more than them eight times. However, Argentina never lost in the semi-finals. The team has played in the final six times before.
4. Argentina have won just one of their last seven matches at the World Cup (three draws and three losses). It was a 2-0 win against Poland in the group stage. However, in the two drawn matches, the Albiceleste took the lead in the tie-breaker.
5. Two consecutive World Cup finals are in front of the Croats. They are the fourth European team to achieve this feat. Earlier, Italy in 1934 and 1938, Netherlands in 1974 and 1978 and West Germany in 1982, 1986 and 1990 played consecutive finals. Brazil has finally shown this achievement. Selasaora played in consecutive World Cup finals in 1994, 1998 and 2002.
6. Croatia holds the record of 100% success in penalty shootout. So far, the team has gone to the tiebreaker four times and left the field with a win each time.
7. Argentina’s best success in the penalty shootout in the World Cup. So far, the team has won five times in this test of luck. The only loss was against hosts Germany in the 2006 World Cup.
8. Messi has created 16 goal chances so far this season, which is the second highest in the season. French star Antoine Griezmann is at the top of the list with 17 goals. Besides, no other player of the 32 team could create more than 11 chances.
9. Messi is just behind Kylian Mbappe (contributed to seven goals) with six assists for Argentina so far.
10. After losing 2-1 against Saudi Arabia, Argentina has turned around. Scaloni’s men conceded only three goals in the next four matches.
11. In the quarter-finals against Brazil, Croatia managed to keep a shot on target only once. It was Bruno Petkovic’s 117th minute goal.