World Cup 2018, Group D, Day One: Croatia 2 – 0 Nigeria

Total Croatia News


Today at 21 CET, in Kaliningrad in Russia, Team Croatia plays their opening game of the 2018 World Cup, against Nigeria. Follow the game at Total Croatia News, as we’ll be bringing you the best moments live!


23px-Flag_of_Croatia.svg.png       CROATIA 2 – 0 NIGERIA       23px-Flag_of_Nigeria.svg.png


In a highly anticipated opening match for Croatian national team at this year’s World Cup in Russia, Croatia will play Nigeria today, at 21:00 CET in Kaliningrad.


22:53: Game over, Croatia wins and takes first place in the group D table!

Minute 85: Substitution for Croatia – Pjaca in, Madžukić out

Minute 77: Substitution for Croatia – Kovačić in, Rebić out

Minute 70: Luka Modrić scores! 2:0 Croatia!

Minute 69: Penalty shot for Croatia! Ekong holds Mandžukić in the box with both arms, in a tight hug. Modrić to take the shot.

Minute 60: Substitution for Nigeria – Musa in, Iwobi out 

Minute 59: Substitution for Croatia – Brozović in, Kramarić out 

Minute 55: Amazing chance for Croatia, Rebić misses, but it’s an offside. 

2nd halftime has started. No changes in any of the teams.

Halftime: After 2 minutes added time, it’s over.

Minute 39: another great chance for Croatia, Rakitić assists Kramarić, another header over the goal.

Minute 32: after a great chance by Rebić, Luka Modrić took a corner and Mario Mandžukić scores with a ! Fifa has decided to declare the goal as the autogoal by Etebo.

Minute 14: first great play by team Croatia, Mandžukić assists Perišić, he shoots just over the goal!

21:00 – the game has started!



Croatian supporters are swarming the bleachers, and red-and-white squares are a force to be reckoned with:


Nigerian starting 11 has been confirmed, and there are some changes to the team that was previously announced:



Some fans are really into the game fully, and some are VIP guests, although they’re being tried for major crime (photos by Slobodan Kadić):



Ivo Sanader at Kaliningrad, June 16, 2018.


Croatia and Nigeria have never before played in an official match.


  • Referee:
    RICCI Sandro (BRA)
  • Assistant Referee 1:
    DE CARVALHO Emerson (BRA)
  • Assistant Referee 2:
    VAN GASSE Marcelo (BRA)BRA
  • Fourth official:
    MATEU LAHOZ Antonio (ESP)


Croatian fans have already found their way to Kaliningrad, and are having fun waiting for the game tonight: (photos by Slobodan Kadić)



The teams are not officially known yet, although Croatian coach Zlatko Dalić suggested strongly that his team will be as shown in the graphic below (prepared by L’Equipe), with rather offensive team, 4 players dedicated to attacking – and that’s in addition to Modrić and Rakitić, two midfielders from Real Madrid and Barcelona who also often have their eyes on the goal. We’ll see how that attacking squad, something that Croatian football fans have been hoping to see for ages, will cope with the strong, young and very fast Nigerian team, that doesn’t have the same number of international stars as they used to have.


DfzkrvuWsAAcMaD.jpg large.jpg

Before this game, 3 other games are scheduled today, first at midday France – Australia (2:1, FT), then at 15 CET Argentina – Iceland (an important game for Croatian team, as Argentina and Iceland are also in Group D and will be our next opponents: surprizing result, as they draw at 1:1), and finally at 18 Peru – Denmark.

You can also follow the game on Twitter,



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