England v Croatia - Spread Betting Preview
England v Croatia UEFA Nations League Preview: Where Will England Finish in Group A4?
England and Croatia will lock horns in a crucial Group A4 clash when the UEFA Nations League resumes at Wembley on Sunday afternoon. Mario Mandzukic and co. secured a heart-breaking World Cup semi-final victory over the Three Lions this summer, but England now have the chance to gain a fragment of revenge. Victory over Croatia on Sunday would see Zlatko Dalic's men relegated to League B, with England advancing to the June Finals.
The UEFA Nations League has replaced a number of friendlies that international teams traditionally competed in. There is a trophy at stake and it also gives certain teams a route to qualify for the next European Championship, so the nations have taken it pretty seriously. Teams are divided into four leagues and all the elite teams are in League A. This league is divided into four groups, each with three teams, England landed in a group alongside Croatia and Spain.
It has been an intriguing contest thus far. Spain made the perfect start by picking up a 2-1 away win in England and then thrashing Croatia 6-0 to establish themselves as the outright favourites to win the tournament. England then played out an eerie 0-0 draw with Croatia behind closed doors in Zagreb, a punishment for racist chants made by Croatian supporters in another fixture against Norway, before battling to a surprise 3-2 win away at Spain last time out. England v Croatia decides the outcome of the group on Sunday.
England v Croatia to Wrap up Group A4
England should have a strong starting 11 for this important match. Wayne Rooney returned for one game only, England's friendly against the USA on Thursday, and he will make way for the likes of Harry Kane, Raheem Sterling and Marcus Rashford to lead the line. This England team is blessed with youthful vigour and they will be full of confidence after vanquishing Spain last time out. Croatia's best players are now entering the twilights of their glittering careers, so England could manage to overrun them and usher in a successful new era with a symbolic victory over their World Cup conquerors.
The Three Lions' defence has performed admirably under the tutelage of Southgate and they have battled to plenty of impressive clean sheets. Yet this game will be decided by how effective England's attack proves against a technically strong Croatian side. If they see plenty of the ball, they can cause Dalic's men all sorts of problems thanks to the predatory instincts and hold up play of Kane, Dele Alli's ability to arrive late in the box and wreak havoc, and the sheer pace and dynamism of Sterling and Rashford.
All eyes will be on Sterling after the Man City forward played a starring role in England's 3-2 victory over Spain in Seville. He scored twice on the night, stylishly silencing the doubters that bemoaned his lack of goals at the World Cup. He has started the 2018/19 campaign in blistering form for the Premier League champions and he looks like the archetypal superstar for the modern game: rapid pace, small stature, low centre of gravity and a technical game that has come on leaps and bounds under the guidance of Pep Guardiola.
What is the Player Goal Minutes Market?
The UEFA Nations League Spread Betting Markets will be popular ahead of this game as the England team is currently held in high esteem thanks to their heroics in the summer. A popular spread betting market is the Player Goal Minutes market, which allows you to speculate on the aggregate number of total minutes of all the goals scored by an individual player in a match. If a player scores in the 32nd and 75th minutes, for example, that would result in a make-up of 107. If a player fails to hit the back of the net, the make-up is 0 minutes. Goals in first-half injury time count as 45, and strikes in injury time at the end of the game count as 90.
Sporting Index will quote a spread on selected players and you have the ability to guess whether the buy/sell has been pitched too low or too high. For the England versus Croatia game, England new boy Callum Wilson has been given a spread of 20-23 minutes. You can either buy at 23 minutes or sell at 20. Let's say you stake £2 on the buy price of 23, and Wilson goes goal crazy, scoring in the 24th minute, the 68th minute and the 86th minute, you would end up with a positive make-up of 178 minutes. Subtracting the buy price from that 178 market settle price would leave you with 155, so you would earn a profit of £310 (£2 stake x 155 = £310). However, if Wilson failed to score, you would lose £46 as the market would settle at 0 (£2 stake x 23 = -£46).
Because no goals means the market settles at 0 selling on the spread would always result in a win if the player fails to score. If the sell price is 20 then no player goals would net you a return of 20 x your stake.
This market is a really exciting way to bet on football matches because it gives you a stake in the game from the very first minute until the last. Fixed odds first goal scorer bets are often settled near the start of the game, but with the Player Goal Minutes market you will be willing a particular player to score or miss throughout the entire contest, which enhances the thrill of watching the game. You have plenty of choices for this England v Croatia game, with Kane, Sterling, Rashford, Mandzukic and Luka Modric all expected to feature, and you can choose multiple players if you really want to ramp up the excitement.
Which way will this Nations League Group A4 decider go? Take a look at all the England v Croatia spread betting markets ahead of this crunch match at Wembley.
Please note: Spread Betting involves risk. Losses may exceed deposits.