England vs Croatia, World Cup 2018: What time is kick-off tonight, what TV channel is it on and what is our prediction?

Nick Friend
The Telegraph
England and Croatia are going for a place in the World Cup 2018 final tonight - and here's all you need to know about the game - FIFA
England and Croatia are going for a place in the World Cup 2018 final tonight - and here's all you need to know about the game - FIFA

What is it? 

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It is the second World Cup 2018 semi-final fixture between England and Croatia, England's opportunity to reach the World Cup final for the first time since 1966 and their first appearance in a World Cup semi-final since 1990, where France now lie in wait.

When is it?

Wednesday, 11 July 2018 - ie today.

What time is kick-off?

It is a 7pm BST start in the United Kingdom, so plenty of time to get back from work or to find a place to watch the match.

What TV channel is it on?

ITV had first pick and obviously plumped for England. You can also follow the match here with Telegraph Sport, from build-up and team news to the final whistle.

England vs Croatia - the definitive guide

Where is the game being played?

The semi-final between England and Croatia will take place at the Luzhniki Stadium, Moscow. The 80,000-capacity venue will also host the final. It also hosted the 2008 Champions League Final between Manchester United and Chelsea. England have only ever played there once - a 2-1 defeat to Russia in 2007.

England vs Sweden, player ratings

What is the latest team news?

England have no injury concerns going into the semi-final, with Gareth Southgate likely to stick with the same team that made it past Sweden last weekend.

Meanwhile, Croatia are sweating on the fitness of right-back Sime Vrsaljko and goalkeeper Danijel Subasic, both of whom were injury concerns during the quarter-final win over Russia.

What are they saying?

England manager Gareth Southgate:

"We are a team who are still improving" Southgate said. "We know where we are.

"We are having success because everybody is working so hard, everybody is working hard on the field.

"We are in this position because guys that are in the squad like (Gary) Cahill, (Phil) Jones, (Danny) Welbeck, (Nick) Pope, (Jack) Butland, (Danny) Rose, the older ones, have been exceptional in their mentality, their attitude to support the team, to train every day.

"Even though they've not had as much game-time as they would have liked, they are as much of a reason why we are where we are.

All you need to know about Croatia

"I think that collective has been key. All of the support staff, all of the players are really tight. We've built that and to get through the two games we've had this week needed all of that because we're not the finished article.

"We don't have renowned world-class players yet, but lots of good young players who are showing on a world stage that they're prepared to be brave with the ball, try to play the right way, have shown some mental resilience as well over the last few weeks.

"We know that in years to come, they are going to be stronger. But today was a huge opportunity for us and it was not something we wanted to miss out on."

England World Cup 2018 | Latest news

England vs Croatia history and past results

Seven matches: England 4, Croatia 1, Draws 2

In Croatia, England willbe facing a side they know only too well. Luka Modric has only enhanced his already sky-high reputation as one of the world's best midfielders, while Ivans Rakitic and Perisic either side of him are both terrific foils for the Real Madrid maestro.

More than a classy midfield, however, England and Croatia carry history. It was that infamous November night at Wembley that etched Steve McClaren's umbrella into English footballing folklore. Scott Carson fumbled Niko Kranjcar's strike into his own net and England missed out on Euro 2008.  

Arguably worse had come a year earlier when a Gary Neville back-pass inexplicably bobbled over Paul Robinson's right foot. Those two defeats - however harrowing - are the only two. In fact, England lead have won the most recent pair of fixtures by a combined score of 9-2. Theo Walcott scored a memorable hat-trick in Zagreb a decade ago.

World Cup 2018 Simulator Single Game

What are the latest odds?

Betting guide: predictions and recommended bets for England v Croatia

  • England - 5/4

  • Croatia - 5/2

What is our prediction? 

A close one to call but the momentum and confidence is all with Gareth Southgate's young charges. We're still believing it's coming home. 

Our prediction: England 2 Croatia 1     

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