Croatia wary but job nearly done
Greece v Croatia

Croatia wary but job nearly done

12/11/2017

Croatia should complete the job against Greece on Sunday night but both teams scoring looks the best play.

It can be difficult to know whether to stick or twist after a convincing first-leg win and, of course, it's easy to think the job is done.

Croatia coach Zlatko Dalic knows the pitfalls and said after the 4-1 win in Zagreb: "We must root out any complacency immediately and head to Greece as if the score was 0-0."

Of his first-leg strategy, Dalic noted: "The basic idea was to raid them on both flanks and the strategy worked. I am not happy with the goal we conceded but in the end it's a very good result."

You can say that again.

However, Croatia keeper Danijel Subasic did have to pull off an excellent save to deny Greek striker Konstantinos Mitroglou a minute from time and 4-2 would have been a lot more interesting.

As it is, Croatia are red-hot favourites to qualify at just 1.02.

Croatia fancied to follow up

Croatia trade at 2.18 to win the second leg as well while Greece are 3.60 to take victory on the night.

A draw is 3.50.

Michael Skibbe's side landed the 'Greeks bearing gifts' headlines with some horrible defending in the first leg as poor marking, a goalkeeping error and a botched back-pass all allowed a classy Croatia side to pounce and morale must now be low.

As in the first leg, no away fans are allowed so at least Greece will have the whole crowd behind them.

For those who believe the decibels can help Greece pull off the miracle, it's 35/1 (Sportsbook) for the 3-0 scoreline that would send them through on away goals.

BTTS in the balance says market

There are several ways of interpreting motivation and ability in this return leg so I'm finding it hard to settle on a bet in the outright market.

However, I think we saw enough in the opening 90 minutes to suggest that both teams can find the net.

The 'Yes' for BTTS is 17/20 on the Sportsbook against 10/11 for 'No' and I'm going for both teams to register.

There were 24 shots in the first leg (17-7 in favour of Croatia) and the visitors have too many attacking weapons for this poor Greek defence to handle.

On the other hand, some pride needs to be restored and I think Greece will have a go and give the crowd at least one roar on the night.

As in the Zagreb meeting, both nets should bulge again in Athens.

Kramaric looks best

There are bigger names in the Croatia side but Andrej Kramaric probably offers the best 'To Score' value at 23/10 with the Sportsbook.

He netted on Thursday night, bagged both goals in Croatia's last away game (2-0 at Ukraine) and the system Dalic plays clearly suits him.

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