Croatia face Spain in the UEFA EURO 2020 round of 16 – all you need to know.
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Croatia take on Spain in the UEFA EURO 2020 round of 16 in Copenhagen on Monday 28 June at 18:00 CET.Croatia vs Spain: click here for live coverage
What's the story?
It's an old adage that the best teams grow into a tournament and Croatia will be hoping that holds true as they head to Copenhagen. Zlatko Dalić's side created little in defeat against England during their group opener, stirred into life in the second half of a 1-1 draw with the Czech Republic, then roared past Scotland to reach the last 16. But history is against them as they have been eliminated in all three previous EURO knockout games.
Spain's route here has been similar. Creativity seemed an issue in draws against Sweden and Poland, but Luis Enrique's charges stormed back to form by equalling the record margin of victory in a EURO finals match by beating Slovakia 5-0 to progress. Therefore, they remain unbeaten – just as they were on all three occasions they went on to lift the trophy.
Where to watch the game on TV
Croatia: Livaković; Juranović, Vida, Ćaleta-Car, Gvardiol; Modrić, Brozović, Kovacić; Vlasić, Petković, Rebić
Out: Perišić (illness), Lovren (suspended)
Misses next match if booked: Brozović, Ćaleta-Car, Kovačić
Spain: Unai Simón; Azpilicueta, Eric Garcia, Laporte, Gayà; Koke, Sergio Busquets, Pedri; Ferran Torres, Morata, Sarabia
Misses next match if booked: Jordi Alba, Busquets, Pau Torres, Rodri
Elvir Islamović, Croatia reporter: I remember very well that night in Bordeaux at UEFA EURO 2016, when Croatia defeated Spain 2-1 and won their group. A lot has changed since then but Luka Modrić remains, still leading the charge – and there's a sense that he's now going into each game knowing it could be his last for the country he has served with such distinction. Croatia have shown time and again that they can mix it with the best; do not bet against them doing so again here.
Graham Hunter, Spain reporter: Suddenly Spain have a sense of momentum, but not one accompanied by either self-satisfaction or complacency. When they were last defending European champions, at EURO 2016, it was Croatia who derailed a team previously in full sail, winning their group match 2-1 with a very late Ivan Perišić clincher. Spain missed a penalty in that game too (as they did against Poland and Slovakia at these finals). However, Luis Enrique’s side now look good enough to make Croatia chase the ball and have a cutting edge up front. Should be a cracker.
View from the camps
Zlatko Dalić, Croatia coach: "It will be very hard to replace Perišić but I think we have quality solutions and I am sure whoever will be playing, he will play to his best to help the team. Can he replace Perišić at the same level? I doubt it. But we are really well covered at that left-wing position and we will have a quality solution. We don't need to worry about the other teams. We respect them all, especially [Spain]. They also know that we are a quality team and they are not happy to be playing against us. We have to be fully motivated. Our goal is to reach the quarter-finals."
Domagoj Vida, Croatia defender: "Spain are a great team, with great players but I think they were far better when the likes of Xavi [Hernández] and [Andrés] Iniesta were playing. But that doesn't mean that Hell isn't awaiting us. We'll have to work hard to try to beat them. We must remain calm while they have the ball. When we have the ball, we have to counter-attack quickly. They don't like not having the ball, so we'll have to make the most of that."
Mateo Kovačić, Croatia midfielder: "A difficult match awaits us. Spain are a great team that love possession and love to play their game. It will be important for us to try to have the ball as much as possible, to take away what they love the most."
Ferran Torres, Spain forward: "Croatia are World Cup runners-up, a top team, so we know they'll be difficult opponents. Winning is down to us working really hard and pushing for victory in Copenhagen."
Dani Olmo, Spain midfielder: "This is a big, special match for me [because I used to play in Croatia for Dinamo Zagreb]. I have a lot of friends in the Croatia team. I knew I would be a Spain international one day and that I would play against Croatia."
Form guide (most recent first)
Spain: WDDWDWDownload the EURO app