22WC-HTW-CRO_CAN

Canada again enter the Group F lion’s den Sunday at the 2022 FIFA World Cup, meeting Croatia – finalists during 2018’s tournament – in Qatar’s capital city.

How to watch and stream

  • TV: FS1 & Telemundo in United States; TSN in Canada
  • Streaming: Foxsports.com, Peacock in United States; TSN GO in Canada

When

Where

  • Khalifa International Stadium | Doha, Qatar

Both countries need a victory to catch Group F favorites Belgium, against whom Les Rouges officially snapped their 36-year World Cup drought on Wednesday. Canada suffered a 1-0 loss despite dominating long stretches, now sitting on zero points.

Meanwhile, Croatia are coming off a 0-0 draw with Morocco and could reach first place with a win over Concacaf’s top team. They’re on one point and, like Canada, are chasing their first World Cup goal in Qatar.

Whatever awaits, all eyes are cast on booking passage to the Round of 16. Only Group F’s top two finishers get that far.

Were it not for Belgium goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois, Canada would likely be celebrating their first-ever World Cup win. But Real Madrid’s shot-stopper denied a penalty kick from Bayern Munich star Alphonso Davies early in the first half, then shuttered the hatch through full-time.

It was a valiant display from Canada, who proved they belong and held a 22-9 shots advantage. Porto midfielder Stephen Eustáquio, CF Montréal defender Kamal Miller and more were stellar against the Red Devils.

Will Canada fear their next European foe? Surely not after head coach John Herdman said – after the Belgium defeat – that they’re ready to go “F Croatia”, impassioned remarks he’s since said meant no disrespect.

Canada, who will co-host the 2026 World Cup alongside the US and Mexico, are a soccer nation on the rise. But the harsh reality is a loss against Croatia will essentially eliminate them from contention in Qatar. Points will be at a premium before their Group F closer Dec. 1 against Morocco.

Croatia’s strength lies in the midfield, where Luka Modric (Real Madrid), Marcelo Brozovic (Inter Milan) and Mateo Kovacic (Chelsea) form one of the top central trios in international soccer. It’s usually a case of containing them rather than stopping them.

But Croatia are No. 12 in the FIFA World Rankings for a reason. They’re carrying a seven-game unbeaten streak (5W-0L-2D), with wins over Denmark (twice) and France (once) serving as highlights. 

Head coach Zlatko Dalic’s team was frustrated by Morocco to start Group F play, though. They held nearly two-thirds of possession (65%-35%) and attempted nearly twice as many passes (642 to 348), yet settled for a 0-0 draw.

Croatia, who lost to France in the 2018 World Cup final, have the talent to go far in this tournament. But if they suffer a shock defeat against Canada, there’s a situation where they enter a Group F swansong Dec. 1 against Belgium needing a win to advance – an unenviable position.

BetMGM Odds

Canada are deemed an underdog against Croatia, per BetMGM.

  • Canada win: +250
  • Draw: +230
  • Croatia win: +110

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