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Croatia odds to win World Cup 2022: Squad, tactics, path to the final, ranking & form

By James Amey

Croatia to win World Cup odds

Published: 20:30, 12 December 2022

Croatia, beaten finalists in 2018, will be hoping to go one step further in Qatar after making it to back-to-back semi-finals.

Croatia finished runners-up in the previous World Cup in Russia after winning all three of their group games against Argentina, Nigeria and Iceland. They would make it to the final by winning each of their knockout games either on penalties or after extra-time, before eventually succumbing to an impressive French side.

At 37, this will be playmaker Luka Modric’s last World Cup tournament and the 2018 Ballon d’Or winner will be hoping to go out in style.


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Latest Croatia odds to win the World Cup

Betting market bet365
Croatia to win the World Cup odds 15/2
Croatia to reach the final odds 11/5
Dominik Livakovic World Cup Golden Glove odds 6/4
Andrej Kramaric World Cup Golden Boot odds 100/1

Our recommended Croatia bet for World Cup 2022

Many expected them to bow out at the World Cup in the quarter-finals, so it came as a big shock to many people as they knocked out the bookies’ favourites Brazil on penalties.


Croatia route to the World Cup 2022 final in Qatar

Group stage results

Fixture Stadium Date*
Morocco 0-0 Croatia Al Bayt Stadium 23 November 2022
Croatia 4-1 Canada Khalifa International Stadium 27 November 2022
Croatia 0-0 Belgium Ahmad bin Ali Stadium 1 December 2022

Who could Croatia meet in the knockout rounds?

By finishing runner-up to surprise package Morocco, the 2018 finalists took on Japan in the round of 16, themselves sending Germany home as Croatia did to Belgium, a pre-tournament dark horse. The Croats ultimately came through each of their last two matches on penalties, and will now be treated to another tough task, facing Lionel Messi’s Argentina in the semi-finals.

Route as Group F runners up  Potential opponent
Round of 16 Japan
Quarter-Final Brazil
Semi-Final Argentina
Final France

Confirmed Croatia World Cup 2022 squad

Player  Position Age Club
Dominic Livakovic Goalkeeper 27 Dinamo Zagreb
Ivica Ivusic Goalkeeper 27 Osijek
Ivo Grbic Goalkeeper 26 Atlético Madrid
Domagoj Vida Defender 33 AEK
Borna Barisic Defender 30 Rangers
Josko Gvardiol Defender 20 RB Leipzig
Josip Juranovic Defender 27 Celtic
Josip Sutalo Defender 22 Dinamo Zagreb
Borna Sosa Defender 24 Stuttgart
Martin Erlic Defender 24 Sassuolo
Josip Stanisic Defender 22 Bayern
Dejan Lovren Defender 33 FC Zenit
Mateo Kovacic Midfielder 28 Chelsea
Marcelo Brozovic Midfielder 30 Inter
Nikola Vlasic Midfielder 25 West Ham
Ivan Perisic Midfielder 33 Tottenham
Luka Sucic Midfielder 20 Salzburg
Mario Pasalic Midfielder 27 Atalanta
Lovro Majer Midfielder 24 Rennes
Luka Modric Midfielder 37 Real Madrid
Kristijan Jakic Midfielder 25 Frankfurt
Marko Livaja Forward 29 Hajduk Split
Ante Budimir Forward 31 Osasuna
Mislav Orsic Forward 29 Dinamo Zagreb
Bruno Petkovic Forward 28 Dinamo Zagreb
Andrej Kramaric Forward 31 Hoffenheim

Croatia players to watch at this year’s World Cup 2022

Croatia top World Cup Golden Boot contender – Andrej Kramaric

Andrej Kramaric was directly involved in four goals in seven starts in qualifying for the tournament, scoring twice and providing two assists. The Hoffenheim man has scored nine goals and provided 12 assists in the Bundesliga since the start of last season and scored and assisted against Bayer Leverkusen earlier in the campaign. He already has two goals to his name this tournament.

Croatia player to watch – Mislav Orsic

Dinamo Zagreb star Mislav Orsic has made a name for himself in European competitions in recent seasons, most notably scoring a hat-trick to knock Tottenham out of the Europa League in 2021. The forward has also scored in both of his Champions League appearances in 2022/23, scoring the winning goal against Chelsea in matchday 1, before scoring at the San Siro against AC Milan, which would turn out to just be a consolation goal. He has made four substitute appearances so far, and registered an assist against Canada.

Croatia emerging player to look out for – Josko Gvardiol 

Despite a host of interest from top clubs across Europe, Josko Gvardiol decided to remain at RB Leipzig for the 2022/23 season and that may be an inspired decision in a World Cup year. The 20-year old is a superb ball playing centre half that isn’t afraid to dribble with the ball, having completed more take-ons than any other centre-back in Europe’s top five leagues in 2021/22 and making more passes into the final third than any other centre-back in the Bundesliga.

Comfortable in a back three and at left-back, Gvardiol gives Zlatko Dalic different options in how he can set his side up against Argentina. Their scintillating attack will struggle to navigate past the precocious bulwark that is Gvardiol.


Croatia tactical analysis & formation at the World Cup

Zlatko Dalic has mainly opted for a 4-3-3 formation in 2022, but has been known to adopt a 4-2-3-1 line-up when needed, most notably in their 1-0 win over Denmark in the Nations League back in June. For the World Cup, though, it’s been all about the 4-3-3.

Experienced Marcelo Brozovic has been given the role of sitting in front of the defence to allow Luka Modric and Mateo Kovacic the freedom to push forward, while Tottenham’s Ivan Perisic is used in much more of an advanced role than he is in Antonio Conte’s wing-back system.

There is no real goalscorer in the Croatia ranks, which may explain why they fired a blank twice in the groups. Their four goals against Canada saw three players bag, with Kramaric notching a brace. In fact, six players scored two or more goals in qualifying for the tournament, with experienced players Modric and Perisic joining Mario Pasalic as the nation’s top scorers on three goals apiece.

Croatia FAQs

Where are Croatia in the Fifa World Rankings?

Croatia are currently ranked 12th in the Fifa World Rankings.

Who is the Croatia manager?

Zlatko Dalic has been in charge of the Croatia national side since 2017 and led them to the 2018 World Cup final. The 55-year old was a defensive midfielder by trade, having three spells at Hajduk Split between 1983 and 1998.

Who is the current Croatia captain?

Five-time Champions League winner Luka Modric, is a serial winner for Real Madrid and currently leads the dressing room for Croatia.

How many times have Croatia won the World Cup? 

Croatia are yet to win the World Cup, previously finishing runners-up in Russia in 2018.

How many times have Croatia competed in the World Cup?

Since gaining independence in 1991, Croatia have competed five times at the World Cup — with this being their sixth — qualifying for six of the last seven tournaments.

Who has scored Croatia’s most goals in World Cup tournaments?

Former Real Madrid, Arsenal and West Ham striker Davor Suker has scored six times at the World Cup, and Ivan Perisic moved level with him after netting in Croatia’s last 16 tie against Japan.

Which player from Croatia has the most World Cup appearances?

Luka Modric has made 17 World Cup appearances for Croatia between 2006 and 2022.

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