World Cup Qatar 2022™ preview: Argentina vs Croatia


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2018 finalists Croatia take on two-time tournament winners Argentina at the Lusail Stadium on Tuesday for a place in the World Cup final.

The battle will see two of the most recent Ballon d'Or winners and respective captains for their countries Lionel Messi and Luka Mordric go head to head, as both seek to end their international careers on a high.

Both sides required dramatic penalty shoot-outs to progress to the semi-finals, as Argentina edged out the Netherlands 4-3 while Croatia beat Brazil 4-2.

Argentina and Croatia have met twice before in the World Cup. In their first encounter in 1998, it was La Albiceleste who prevailed by a narrow 1-0 scoreline, but more recently, Croatia secured a 3-0 win over Messi and Co. in Russia - a result few would enivisage heading into Tuesday's battle.


Argentina looked be cruising to the semi-finals after going 2-0 up against the Netherlands. Nahuel Molina's strike was beautifully assisted by Lionel Messi, with the record seven-time Ballon d'Or winner going on to add his own name to the scoresheet and equal Gabriel Batistuta's all-time World Cup record.

With less than 10 minutes remaining however, Lionel Scaloni's side took their foot off the gas and an unlikely saviour emerged for the Dutch in the form of substitute Wout Weghorst, currently on loan at Besiktas from Championship side Burnley.

Two late goals from the 6ft 4' frontman, the second coming from a jaw-dropping last gasp free-kick routine, forced extra-time and eventually penalties.

South America's last remaining side held their nerve to set up a semi-final clash with the previous tournament's finalists. 
This World Cup is widely expected to be Messi's last, and at 35 years of age and seeing how his long-time rival Cristiano Ronaldo has fared in recent months, the little magician will know all too well that this is the last opportunity to perform close to his highest level.

Argentina Predicted Team:

E. Martinez; Molina, Romero, Otamendi, Tagliafico; Fernandez, De Paul, Mac Allister; Di Maria, Messi, Alvarez


How to watch Online – beIN  CONNECT
Channel- beIN SPORTS MAX 3
Kick-Off – 22:00
Stadium - Lusail Stadium


Croatia are no strangers to extra-time and penalties. On their road to the 2018 final in Russia, Zlatko Dalic's side won every knockout game after the 90 minutes had elapsed - twice on penalties.

Despite conceding first against both Japan and Brazil, Croatia found a way to get back into the game. That mental strength may be required once again when they face an Argentina side determined to end their 36-year wait to once again lift the World Cup trophy.

While all who took to the pitch for Croatia could be applauded for the victory over Brazil, it was Dominik Livakovic who proved to be the standout hero. The Dinamo Zagreb keeper produced a magnificent display throughout the match, making 11 saves before denying Rodrygo in the shoot-out.

Dalic's side are now unbeaten in 11 matches heading into their semi-final showdown with Argentina, and having just outed one South American giant, they will be hoping to do the same once again.

Croatia Predicted Team:

Livakovic; Juranovic, Gvardiol, Lovren, Sosa; Modric, Brozovic, Kovacic; Pasalic, Kramaric, Perisic