Croatia beats Argentina by 3 goals, enters knockout phase

Croatia beats Argentina by 3 goals, enters knockout phase
Croatia have beaten Argentina 3-0 and entered the knockout phase of the tournament.

  • 90+1': GOAAAAL! Ivan Rakitic with an easy chance in front of an open goal to tap it in and makes it 3-0! Corner for Croatia and Rakitic surges towards the middle, his first shot is saved by Caballero. The rebound falls to Kovacic who passes it back to Rakitic and he has all the time in the world to put that in.
  • 90+4': Four minutes of added time
  • 87': Now YELLOW CARD TO ACUNA
  • 86': CHANCE! Rakitic nearly makes it 3-0 after his shot hits the side post and then the rebound is headed over the goalpost.
  • 85': YELLOW CARD TO OTAMENDI! Ridiculous from Otamendi who kicks Rakitic's head. That's needless. Free kick to Croatia
  • 82': FINAL SUBSTITUTION FOR CROATIA: Kovacic replaces Perisic
  • 80': GOAL! What a strike from Luka Modric! He has put the game to bed with a specacular strike from 30 yards. A curler to the right corner as a diving Caballero cannot save the ball from crashing inside the net.
  • 78': Corner for Argentina. Pavon takes the low route but it is headed clear.
  • 76': Emotions running high. Ivan Rakitic goes down and is in pain. Argentina won't put the ball out of play, instead they surge ahead with the move. Referee finally blows the whistle and play is halted. Rakitic is still lying down. Argentine players are not happy. Rakitic walks off the pitch
  • 74': The Argentine fans wear a disappointing look. It looks like they have lost hopes of a comeback.
  • 72': Strinic fouls Messi who is visibly frustrated with the shenanigan. Free kick to Argentina
  • 71: Last 20 minutes of the game. Argentina in desperate need of an equaliser. Dybala from the right sends a curler over the cross bar.
  • 68': Argentina make their final SUBSTITUTION of the game - Enzo Perez off, Paulo Dybala in
  • 67': Vrsaljko gets a Yellow Card
  • 66': Ah! Croatia nearly double their lead after Rakitic supplies to Vrsaljko who in turn finds Mandzukic whose flick crashes on the side netting.
  • 64': The corner goes to waste as Otamendi's header is well over the cross bar.
  • 63': CHANCE! Argentina with a brilliant opportunity to equalise but the Croatian defense puts in a solid shift to deny them. Higuain picks up from the byline and sends it back to Meza whose attempt is palmed by away by Sebasic. The rebound falls to Messi but Rakitic intercepts it for a corner.
  • 59': Meanwhile, Mandzukic shown a Yellow Card for his foul on Meza.
  • 58': SUBSTITUTION for CROATIA - Goalscorer Rebic taken off, Kramaric replaces him.
  • 57': SUBSTITUTION for ARGENTINA - Pavon replaces Salvio
  • 56': Croatia are on a roll here now. Perisic with a cross for Mandzukic but nothing comes of it.
  • 55': SUBSTITUTION for ARGENTINA - Sergio Aguero off, Gonzalo Higuain on
  • 53': GOAL! That's a terrible mistake! Argentine goalkeeper must be livid with that he has done. Willy Caballero attempts to chip one back to Mercado but he ends up setting up Rebic for an easy goal that sees Croatia taking the lead!
  • 53': CHANCE! Sergio Aguero feeds on a sumptuous pass from Tagliafico but from a tight angle, he can only manage the ball into the hands of Subasic.

  • 51': YELLOW CARD to Gabriel Mercado for a poor challenge
  • 48': Macherano does well to win the ball but a handball from Modric halts the momentum. Free kick to Argentina but it's a tame attempt. No damage done.
  • 46': Second half gets underway. Argentina set the ball rolling
  • It hasn't been an exceptional play in the first half from either sides. Both the teams had at least one open chance to take the lead sandwiched between some poor defending.
  • Half-time: Argentina 0-0 Croatia
  • 45'+2': Brilliant ball from Luka Modric and Rebic makes a mess of it! Goes for the glory and sends it into the orbit.
  • 45'+2': Two minutes off added time in the first half
  • 43': Poor tackles continue and this time it's Meza who catches Vrsaljko’s foot. Free kick to Croatia.
  • 42': Mascherano fouls Rakitic. Free kick to Croatia. Ball rolls inside the Argenine box but Rebic has again committed a foul on Salvio. He had lot of free space. Goal kick to Argentina. A missed opportunity this.
  • 41': Acuna speeds ahead alone along the touchline as Luka Modric attempts to stop him. After some struggle, Acuna sends a wild shot over the byline for Croatian goal kick.
  • 40': Rebic in the thick of action again as he stomps on Salvio's ankle. He has been issued a YELLOW CARD. Argentine bench is furious
  • 38': A long ball inside the Croatian box and Subasic gets to it first
  • 35': Mercado collides with Rebic and gets the worse of it! He goes down and is receiving treatment. It'll be a free kick for Argentina once he is all better. Well, he's going out for treatment. Argentina will take the set-piece without him
  • 34': Salvio fouled by Strinic. Free kick for Argentina
  • 33': Mandzukic! Now it's Croatia's turn to miss an open chance! A brilliant cross and Mandzukic makes his run from the left and finds him in front of the Argentine goalie. He dives but his header lands wide of the post! WHAT A MISS!
  • 29': CHANCE! Oh dear you cannot get a better chance than this. Perez had one Croatian between him and the goal and all he can do is send the ball wide!
  • 28': You can almost feel something happening when Lionel Messi gets the ball. He sends a diagonal ball from the right but it floats between Croatians and finally lands into the gloves of the 'keeper.
  • 27': Waste of a corner this by Argentina. Meza crashes the shot into the side netting. Goal kick for Croatia.
  • 26': Aguero goes all out on his own, enters the box from the left and sends the cross which is blocked with a header and a corner for Argentina
  • 23': Croatia look slightly better off than Argentina who still seem to be recovering from their shock draw against Iceland in opener.
  • 21': Acuna sends the cross, the power is too much behind the shot and the ball just about floats over the crossbar before bouncing off the far post.
  • 18': A stern challenge on Perez from Brozovic but the referee is least interested. Macherano and Messi are furious and are arguing with the referee.
  • 15': A free kick to Croatia inside the Argentine half but the effort is cleared by Otamendi. Rakitic and Perez attempt to gain possession of a loose ball and it's the former who has been fouled and consequently wins the free kick.
  • 14': So far, it's even stevens. Both teams with a couple of chances to get ahead but nothing materialising
  • 13': CHANCE! Messi starts the move from the right, gets the ball to Salvio whose cross is picked by Meza and it's deflected by Croatian defender Lovren. Superb effort this from the Croatian.
  • 12': CHANCE! A lob inside the Croatian box and Messi stretches himself, sticks out his foot but the ball evades him.
  • 10': Tagliafico in the thick of action again as his timely header clears the ball from the danger zone.
  • 9': Tagliafico stomps on the boot of Mandzukic who then goes down in pain. Referee blows the whistle. Croatia have the free kick.
  • 6': Luka Modric takes the corner and it's Mascherano who makes the clearance to settle Argentine nerves. A long pass follows and Perisic is let loose again. Offside flag is up.
  • 5': CHANCE! A slip in the defence after Subasic sends one flying over the centre with Argentine caught napping. Perisic is free and he races ahead and shoots with his left boot. Caballero has to dive to his left to deflect it for a corner. Early warning shots fired.
  • 2': The atmosphere in the stadium is electric. Singing all around.
  • 1': It's kick off! Croatia set the ball rolling. Argentina with the first wave of attack which eventually fizzles out.

#Messi and Modric are the two skippers. Argentina in their white and sky blue vertical stripes, Croatia in dark blue.

#Time for the national anthems.


Lineups are in!

Argentina (3-4-3)
Willy Caballero; Gabriel Mercado, Nicolas Otamendi, Nicolas Tagliafico; Enzo Perez, Javier Macherano, Eduardo Salvio, Marcos Acuna; Maximiliano Meza, Sergio Aguero, Lionel Messi (capt)

Coach: Jorge Sampaoli (ARG)

Croatia (4-5-1)
Danijel Subasic; Sime Vrsaljko, Ivan Strinic, Domagoj Vida, Dejan Lovren; Ivan Rakitic, Marcelo Brozovic, Ante Rebic, Luka Modric (capt), Ivan Perisic; Mario Mandzukic

Coach: Zlatko Dalic (CRO)

Referee: Ravsham Irmatov (UZB) 
 
Courtesy: TOI
 
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Croatia have beaten Argentina 3-0 and entered the knockout phase of the tournament. 90+1': GOAAAAL! Ivan Rakitic with an easy chance in front of an open goal to tap it in and makes it 3-0! Corner for Croatia

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