Can Cristiano Ronaldo inspire Portugal to a victory against Croatia? Well he hasn’t inspired them to a win yet in this tournament and Will Burns thinks he’ll fail again on Saturday night.
Saturday 25th June 2016 – 20:00 BST
EURO 2016 – ROUND OF 16
CROATIA v PORTUGAL
Apart from the last twenty minutes of their collapse against Czech Republic, Croatia is the side that have impressed the most in my opinion over the last two weeks. With a strong squad and great leaders throughout the team, Ante Cacic’s men are in with a real chance to go as far as possible in the Euros and the enthusiasm inside the camp is understandable.
On a 10-match unbeaten run and having won five of seven games in 2016, they have the players to trouble any team on any given day. Against Spain, arguably their best player, Real Madrid midfielder Luka Modric was absent due to tight quadriceps and they still made the Spanish look human after La Roja had controlled games against Czech Republic and Turkey.
One man that has lit a spark for the Croatians is Sevilla’s Ivan Perisic. The left-sided attacker was my pick to be his country’s top scorer in the tournament at 8/1 and has already notched twice and I like the odds of 17/5 at 888Sport.
The perfect way to defeat and stop Portugal from playing their game seems to be to get into them and wind them up. Although quality players, Nani and especially Pepe have shown over the years that if things are not going their way, they attitude gets negative in a hurry. Nani gives up and Pepe lashes out and playacts like a child. In addition, Cristiano Ronaldo can get himself in a huff if he doesn’t grab the glory so I see Croatia surpassing them on Saturday night and climbing into the quarter-finals.
TIP: Croatia to win (2.72 at 888Sport)
TIP: Ivan Perisic to score anytime (4.40 at 888Sport)