Croatia (0-1-1) vs. Mexico (1-0-1)
|Date & Time||Monday June 23, 2014, 4:00 PM (EDT)|
The Line: Mexico +180
In an interesting World Cup match that will help decide group A, Mexico and Croatia will take the field Monday afternoon.
Croatia bounced back from a devastating loss to Brazil the way we expected with a 4-0 beat down over Cameroon. Croatia held the ball for 51 percent of the match and was super aggressive offensively by getting 21 shots up. A win here over Mexico would be good enough to get this team to the next round. Mario Mandžuki? scored two goals in the win over Cameroon and if he gets going, watch out. He’s capable of putting up points in a hurry. You can expect a well-rested Croatia team, as coach Niko Kovac admitted that he’s going to take it easy on his players due to the severity of this match.
Mexico got past Cameroon in the opening match and somehow forced a 0-0 draw against Brazil. Guillermo Ochoa was able to stop eight shots on goal, including two or three attempts that he had no business saving. Ochoa has made the difference in this tournament for Mexico and gives them a shot to win any match if he can continue to make saves of his life. He’s allowed only one goal this tournament. Offensively, you have to be concerned with Mexico considering they’ve only scored one goal in their first two games. In fact, Mexico only got three shots in goal against Brazil. Oribe Peralta, the guy who scored Mexico’s only goal in the World Cup, needs to keep attacking and find the net in this match.
Croatia should be in the position Mexico is in if it weren’t for a questionable opening match. With that said, a draw won’t help them in this spot and I believe the pressure will get to them. Mexico has the hottest goalkeeper in the tournament and I think that makes the difference here.
Somebody for Mexico scores late and wins the game, ending a frustrating World Cup for Croatia.