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Sporting Life's betting tips for England v Croatia on November 18
1

England to burst out of the blocks

George Pitts fancies England to win their crunch Nations League match with Croatia on Sunday, with two recommended bets for the Wembley meeting.

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First start for Ben Chilwell? Predicted England XI to start UEFA Nations League clash v Croatia

Jordan Pickford, Kieran Trippier, Harry Kane, John Stones and Jordan Henderson are all expected to start for England in Croatia
Jordan Pickford, Kieran Trippier, Harry Kane, John Stones and Jordan Henderson are all expected to start for England in Croatia

We take a look at the potential starting 11 as England travel to take on Croatia in the UEFA Nations League.

The last time these two sides met was just a matter of months ago, July in fact, where Croatia came from a goal down to send England out of the World Cup semi-final in extra-time.

Gareth Southgate is set to ditch his 3-5-2 and change it to 4-3-3, according to reports and this will match Croatia's lineup as they have already released their starting 11 for the match-up.

See who we think could line up for Southgate's Three Lions side in eastern Europe on Friday...


Betting

Croatia to win - 9/5 | Draw - 21/10 | England to win 9/5


Goalkeeper: Jordan Pickford (Everton)

England and Everton goalkeeper Jordan Pickford

The England stopper will pick up his 12th international cap should he start as the number one tonight.

Pickford played his part throughout the World Cup, including a valiant performance in the round of 16 penalty shoot-out win over Colombia, justifying his place as first-choice shot-stopper.

Right-back: Kyle Walker (Man City)

The rampant right-back played centre-back during England's World Cup run but is expected to revert back to his favoured position against Croatia. He hit a long-range strike to seal Man City's win over Newcastle last month and has contributed to five clean sheets this season in only seven appearances.

Centre-back: John Stones (Man City)

John Stones, pictured in England training this week
John Stones, pictured in England training this week

In only four Premier League starts this campaign, Stones has registered two clean sheets, which include last weekend’s shut out at Liverpool, keeping Mo Salah, Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane quiet. The centre-back, 24, netted two goals at the World Cup.

Centre-back: Harry Maguire (Leicester)

Maguire was one of England’s stand-out performers at the World Cup. His tough defensive displays were replicated through the solitary goal and assist that he claimed at the tournament. Amidst speculation of a summer move to Manchester United, the no-nonsense centre-back remained at the Foxes and has helped them keep two clean sheets thus far, contributing two goals at the other end.

Left wing-back: Ben Chilwell (Leicester)

England and Leicester left-back Ben Chilwell
England and Leicester left-back Ben Chilwell

The Leicester left-back is all set to make his first start at senior level, as Danny Rose and Luke Shaw have both pulled out of the squad. Chilwell, 21, has impressed Claude Puel, and evidently Gareth Southgate, at the King Power Stadium and will intend to make his mark against Croatia.

Midfield: Eric Dier (Spurs)

Dier has started seven of Spurs' eight league games and has been the rock in front of the backline that has attained two successive clean sheets. If the defensive midfielder is to start, it will be his 35th appearance for the Three Lions.

Midfield: Jordan Henderson (Liverpool)

The Liverpool midfielder has helped Liverpool start strongly in their bid to win the Premier League title and is an important component in Southgate's midfield. Henderson, 28, is primed to make his 47th national appearance.

Midfield: Ross Barkley (Chelsea)

Ross Barkley: The 24-year-old is back in the frame with England
Ross Barkley: The 24-year-old is back in the frame with England

The Chelsea playmaker played a pivotal role in earning three points against Southampton last weekend, scoring one and assisting another. He looks revitalised under Maurizio Sarri, appearing in seven out of their eight Premier League matches to get back into Southgate's plans. He could earn his 23rd international cap in Croatia.

Forward: Raheem Sterling (Man City)

Sterling continued where he left off last season, recording four goals and two assists from his opening seven league matches, creating 15 chances for team-mates in this period too. The City winger will look to exploit the Croatia backline with his pace and trickery which has flourished under Pep Guardiola.

Forward: Harry Kane (Spurs)

Harry Kane, pictured in England training this week
Harry Kane, pictured in England training this week

As England captain, Kane has netted 12 times in 12 matches, averaging a goal every 91 minutes. The Tottenham talisman bagged the World Cup Golden Boot with six goals in as many matches, and has started the domestic season in similar fashion, netting five goals thus far.

Forward: Marcus Rashford (Man United)

The Red Devils youngster is in line to earn his 28th cap for England as he is likely to start alongside Kane and Sterling in a front three. Rashford has only found the net once but has hit five goals in his international career, including a wonder-strike against Costa Rica at Elland Road before the World Cup. The forward, 20, also scored in England's last two outings, including a win over Switzerland.

Marcus Rashford scores for England against Switzerland
Marcus Rashford netted last time out against Switzerland

Predicted XI (4-3-3): Pickford; Walker, Stones, Maguire, Chilwell; Dier, Henderson, Barkley; Sterling, Kane, Rashford.


Essential reading

Kieran Trippier celebrates England's goal v Croatia in the semi-final of the 2018 World Cup
Kieran Trippier celebrates England's goal v Croatia in the semi-final of the 2018 World Cup

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Odds correct as of 1240 BST on 12/10/18

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Most Read Football

Sporting Life's betting tips for England v Croatia on November 18
1

England to burst out of the blocks

George Pitts fancies England to win their crunch Nations League match with Croatia on Sunday, with two recommended bets for the Wembley meeting.

Check out today's Paper Talk2

Paper Talk: City land De Jong

Manchester City are close to sealing a £61million deal for Ajax star Frenkie De Jong - according to the Sunday Mirror.

Check out today's Paper Talk3

Paper Talk: Mourinho wants Godin

Manchester United want Diego Godin but must pay more than £53million for Milan Skriniar

Gareth Southgate at Saturday's press conference4

Southgate expecting thriller

Gareth Southgate believe's Sunday's Nation League decider between England and Croatia will live up to the billing.

Portugal5

Portugal to host Nations League finals

Portugal will host next summer's Nations League finals after they secured their passage from Group A3 thanks to a goalless draw against Italy.

Football Tips

Sporting Life's betting tips for England v Croatia on November 18

England to burst out of the blocks

George Pitts fancies England to win their crunch Nations League match with Croatia on Sunday, with two recommended bets for the Wembley meeting.

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