Croatia 3-0 Malta Croatia's hopes of promotion increased as they won to take the lead in Group 5.
Out of the competition's top level since 1997, Croatia lead Group 5 following their victory against the tournament debutants, and are yet to lose a game or concede a goal.
Iva Kusar put Croatia into a 28th-minute lead, which they held until half-time. That advantage was doubled on 68 minutes by Kristina Šundov and Branka Kozic completed the scoring 15 minutes from the end.
Two points clear of the Republic of Ireland, Croatia now meet unbeaten Romania on 18 October in Belisce. Malta, pointless and goalless after three games, will aim to get off the mark against Ireland four days later.