Does Croatia Still Have a Shot in Nations League? Yes, But it Won’t Be Easy

Daniela Rogulj

After England defeated Spain in Seville on Monday, all three teams in Croatia’s Nations League group remain in the fight for first place.

In UEFA’s newest competition, the Nations League, Spain continues to lead Group 4 with six points, while England follows in second place with four points, and the 2018 World Cup finalists, Croatia, are in third with one point – but with one game less, reports on October 16, 2018. 

The competition is not over yet, and ahead of us are still matches between Croatia – Spain on November 15th in Zagreb and England – Croatia on November 18th in London. In the event Croatia wins both of these matches, they will win the first place in the group and play the final-four tournament which will be held in June next year. 

However, if Croatia does not claim the victory against England at Wembley, they will almost certainly end up in the last place of the group and be relegated in the Nations League to play in the second division.

Therefore, Croatia can be the first and the last place in the group, with finishing last having its consequences. As the draw for the Euro 2020 qualifications is approaching, Croatia should not be among the two worst teams in the Nations League, for obvious reasons. 

Namely, the last two teams will not be a top seed for the Euro 2020 draw. Croatia is currently facing such a scenario because they are among the four worst teams the Nations League ‘Group A’. The worst team is the national team of Iceland, who after three games has zero points with odds of 1:11. Iceland is followed by Croatia, Poland, and Germany, who each have one point.

Because Iceland has only one game left in the competition, it is clear that they cannot move up from the last place in their group, and it is even more certain that they have the highest chance of being among the two worst teams.

In the battle between Croatia, Germany, and Poland, Croatia is the worst placed team with 0:6 goal differential (thanks to the defeat to Spain in September), though Poland has played one game more. This means that Croatia must secure at least one positive result in the remaining two matches. Perhaps one game will be enough, but they should not lose both games whatsoever. 

Additionally, Croatia and Germany are the only teams that have not yet scored in the Nations League. 


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