England will get the chance to get revenge on Croatia when the two countries meet in Rijeka this evening.
Croatia knocked Gareth Southgate’s side out of the World Cup at the semi-final stage earlier this summer, so the England boss will be hoping to get a small measure of revenge by winning tonight’s Nations League clash.
Ahead of the game, we’ve taken a look at both squads and selected what we think we be the best combined XI of the two.
England and Croatia: Combined XI
An argument could be made for either Danijel Subasic or Jordan Pickford as there isn’t too much difference in quality between the two, but we’ve picked Subasic as he’s a bit more experienced.
Kyle Walker and Sime Vrsaljko are two of the best right-backs in Europe but we give the Man City man the nod. He might play as a centre-back for England, but we’ll select him at his more natural position.
John Stones has always had massive potential and he’s started to reach the levels expected of him, both for club and country.
Perhaps a surprise inclusion but Liverpool’s Joe Gomez has been one of the best defenders in the Premier League this season and deserves to be recognised by getting a place in this team.
Whilst England are still searching for their left-back, Croatia have Ivan Strinic who has been excellent for a number of years.
Luka Modric (C)
A pretty easy choice! Luka Modric is one of the best players in the world and would get into almost any team.
Modric’s influence on Croatia often leads to Ivan Rakitic being slightly overlooked but he is a quality player and has been for a while now. Not many bad players play every week for Barcelona!
Mateo Kovacic wasn’t always a regular in the Croatian team, mainly because of a lack of game time at Real Madrid. However, he’s starting games for Chelsea now and it’s a matter of time before he’s in the national team line-up for every game. He rounds off our three-man midfield.
Raheem Sterling is often given too much unnecessary stick by England fans and the media. He’s one of England’s best players and has a huge impact on the team, although he does need to start scoring more goals at international level.
On the other flank will be Ivan Perisic, a man England know well after he scored against them in the World Cup semi-final. The Inter Milan winger is a terrific player.
The World Cup Golden Boot winner is one of the best strikers on the planet. His goalscoring record is phenomenal and he deserves a place in this team.