Our prediction for this World Cup 2022 match:
Slovenia and Croatia, the two neighbouring countries, face each other at Stadion Stozice in the 2022 World Cup qualifier. Slovenia missed out on a place at the EURO 2021 finals, and, no doubt, they are eager to make amends for the unsuccessful qualifying campaign. Fit-again midfielder Josip Ilicic will be the man to watch in the home team. The Croats, on the other hand, did well to reach the 2018 FIFA World Cup final, and they are on a quest to repeat the success.
Ivan Rakitic is no longer part of the national team, but Real Madrid superstar Luka Modric will surely pose a big threat for the opposition defenders. The good news for the visitors is that Milan attacker Ante Rebic has overcome his injury. Anyhow, Croatia are more of a team than Slovenia, and we predict that the visitors will prove their worth on the field.
Highlighted Player (Andraz Sporar):
Born in Ljubljana, Slovenia on February 27, 1994, Andraz Sporar is a striker who plays for Slovakian side Slovan Bratislava. Sporar spent his youth career at the likes of Olimpija, MNK Ljubljana and Interblock and he continued playing for the last mentioned club at senior level.
After scoring 10 goals in 21 appearances for the club, the Slovenian attacker moved to his hometown club Olimpija Ljubljana where he earned the captaincy. Andraz Sporar was scoring goals for fun in the Slovenian top flight, netting 46 goals in 95 appearances in the league, but he then decided to take a step forward in his career.
In the 2015/2016 season he moved to Swiss outfit Basel, but he made no more than 19 appearances in the league for the RotBlau. During his spell with Basel Sporar played for Arminia Bielefeld on loan as well and in the winter of 2018 he joined Slovan Bratislava. Speaking of his international career, he made his debut with Slovenia in November 2016 against Malta.
Highlighted Team (Croatia):
While the national football team of Croatia also played international matches between 1940 and 1944, they only resumed their duties in 1990 after the country gained independence from Yugoslavia. Vatreni enjoyed a remarkable start on the international stage, winning the third place on their first ever World Cup appearance in France in 1998, while crashing out in the group stage at the 2002, 2006 and 2014 tournaments.
Croatia also reached the quarter-finals at the 1996 and 2008 European Championships, proving they are rightly considered one of Europe’s top sides at the start of the 21st century. Long-serving captain Darijo Srna is their most capped player with over 130 appearances for the national team, whereas former Real Madrid striker Davor Suker is one of their most famous players and top scorer with 45 goals.
Other notable footballers to have played for Croatia include Luka Modric, Zvonimir Boban, Robert Prosinecki, Ivan Rakitic and Mario Mandzukic. Miroslav Blazevic and Slaven Bilic are the coaches that have been behind team’s biggest success stories up to date.