Japan vs Croatia
Croatia have carried out wonders to punch above their weight for therefore lengthy in worldwide soccer and are decided to maintain their fame going in opposition to Japan of their last-16 match on the World Cup on Monday, coach Zlatko Dalic stated.
“The population of Croatia is 4 million and the results we have achieved on the world stage are miraculous,” stated Dalic, whose nation have been runners-up on the final World Cup and are unbeaten in three video games in Qatar.
“We are continually present in tournaments and World Cups, and that itself is a great success. We have become a world football force.”
The Twelfth-ranked Croatians are favourites to beat Twenty fourth-ranked Japan, however the Samurai Blue astounded expectations to defeat two powerhouses and former World Cup winners, Spain and Germany, on the group stage in comebacks.
SCHEDULE FOR ROUND OF 16 MATCH DAY 3
Japan vs Croatia – 8:30 PM, December 5 – Al Janoub Stadium
Brazil vs South Korea – 12:30 AM, December 6 – Stadium 974
Timings in IST
“They will apply the Samurai warrior philosophy. So will we. If we want to go further, we must apply that same attitude, do our best and never underestimate anyone,” Dalic instructed reporters, noting Japan’s scant possession statistics in each these wins.
“Japan have the least ball possession in the world, but they make great transition. This is the most perseverant, persistent opponent. They simply do not give up. We have a similar mentality, Japan and Croatia. We stand on equal ground.”
AGAINST THE ODDS
The coach stated Croatia would struggle to match and even higher their efficiency in Russia.
“Everyone has their right to dream. In 2018, we demonstrated that dreams can come true,” he stated. “In the last 20 years, Croatia have played magnificent matches. If you look at the countries in the round of 16, we are the country with the smallest population. We are here against the odds.”
Dalic singled out Croatia’s captain Luka Modric, who has once more performed outstandingly regardless of being within the twilight of his profession at 37.
“I cannot compliment him enough on his performance. This will not be the last tournament he will play for Croatia. His professionalism, his good shape, his training, his working on self-improvement is unprecedented,” he stated.
Croatia gamers have fun after the crew’s qualification to the knockout levels after beating Belgium of their remaining group match.
| Picture Credit score: Getty Photographs
“We will need Luka for some time more in the future.”
Defender Borna Sosa faces health checks afterward Sunday and stays a doubt for the Japan sport.
“If he’s not up to the challenge tomorrow, we won’t take any risks. We need fully prepared players,” Dalic stated.
Younger defender Josko Gvardiol stated he knew Japan’s spirit effectively from their presence within the Bundesliga the place he performs.
“I know the Japanese players very well,” he added.
“They represent quite a danger. They are a fighting team. They fight to the very end. They do not surrender.”
Brazil vs South Korea
Brazil making it to the knockout rounds of a World Cup isn’t any shock. A loss to Cameroon in its final group sport didn’t cease the Selecao from making it previous the group stage for the ninth consecutive version.
The Brazilian journalists, nevertheless, will not be too happy with Tite’s “lack of respect for the tournament and other teams” in fielding 9 new starters in that sport.
That fringe Brazil facet created many probabilities, however the objective was lacking as these auditioning for a beginning function gave a masterclass in wastefulness. Brazil physician Rodrigo Lasmar has labored the toughest in Qatar because the crew continues to fret about health of Neymar. The nice physician, nevertheless, has indicated that Neymar could be match to play, recovering effectively sufficient from the ankle damage that he had suffered within the first sport. Tite, was extra forthcoming, vehemently saying “yes” when requested if Neymar will play throughout his pre-match press convention.
Nevertheless, the Brazilians will miss Gabriel Jesus and Alex Telles as each males are out of the event with knee issues. Whereas Richarlison, already the scorer of a surprise objective, can be main the assault, Telles’ withdrawal and the recurrent hip drawback of Alex Sandro would possibly trigger an issue for Tite for the left-back place. However the philosophical Brazilian supervisor has at all times requested us to deal with all his 26 and never particular person gamers. “Brazil has 26 great athletes. We do not call them starting players or reserves. They are all players.” he had stated.
Get all the outcomes for the FIFA World Cup 2022 right here: Full listing of all matches, scores, outcomes, goalscorers
South Korea, too, has been tormented by accidents. Tottenham’s Son Heung-min miraculously recovered from a facial fracture to play in Qatar with a Zorro face masks, and Hwang Hee-chan, whose objective took Korea by, has additionally struggled with a hamstring pressure.
Brazil was final knocked out within the Spherical of 16 by a Claudio Caniggia strike in 1990, and the Taegeuk Warriors’ final progress past this spherical got here within the 2002 World Cup on dwelling soil. However historical past has by no means mattered in a World Cup, extra so on this one in Qatar.