Croatia vs LatviaEuro 2024, KO: 19:45 Sep 8, 2023, Stadion HNK Rijeka
Croatia will be looking to finally get going in Group D of the European Championship qualifiers as they host Latvia on Friday. The Croats are superior in every way and should have the upper hand over the visitors, who have lost every qualifying fixture so far.
Croatia have made a decent start to the qualifiers, claiming one win and one draw from their opening two matches. They began with a 1-1 draw with Wales before claiming a 2-0 victory over group leaders Turkey in their previous fixture.
The Croats are currently five points off the pace in the group but only because they have played fewer games due their involvement in the UEFA Nations League. They beat Netherlands 4-2 in the UNL semi-final but lost on penalties to Spain in the final after battling to a 0-0 draw in extra-time.
Overall, Croatia are unbeaten over 90 minutes in their last five matches across all competitions, including the victory over Group B leaders Turkey. Zlatko Dalic's men remain as potent as ever going forward as evidenced by the win over Netherlands, although they tend to show the odd lapse of concentration at the back having conceded in three fixtures in that run.
Prior to the start of the qualifying campaign, Latvia were generally considered the weakest team in the group and expected to struggle. They are already living up to those expectations and are bottom of the standings having lost all three of their matches so far.
Latvia were beaten 1-0 in their opening fixture in the campaign and followed that up with a 3-2 defeat to group leaders Turkey. Dainis Kazakevics’ men head into Friday’s clash off the back of a 2-1 defeat to Armenia in their previous qualifying fixture.
Overall, Latvia's struggles are not just limited to the qualifiers as they have been poor for a while now. They travel to Croatia off the back of four straight defeats across all competitions and have also lost their last three away matches.
How the bookies view it
Croatia are considered overwhelming favourites among the bookies with a home win priced at 1/10 by Unibet. A victory for Latvia is valued at 28/1 by bet365 while Unibet is also offering odds of 10/1 for a draw.
Head to head
Croatia have won all four previous matches with Latvia, although the last meeting was a Euro 2012 qualifying fixture which ended 2-0.
Players to watch
Andrej Kramaric has made a fine start to the season with Bundesliga side Hoffenheim and will be looking to carry that form into the national team. Having also found the net in two of the last four appearances for Croatia, the forward could be backed to maintain his scoring run at 8/11 with bet365.
For all of Latvia’s struggles in the qualifiers, they often show some attacking verve and have scored in two of their three matches so far. Roberts Uldrikis usually features in attack and is priced at 15/2 by bet365 to find the net.
Anything else catch the eye?
Croatia should be too strong for Latvia and with a comfortable victory expected, a -2 handicap can be considered at evens with Paddy Power. They can also be backed to win both halves at 19/20 with William Hill.
The Croats saw over 3.5 goals in their UNL fixture against Netherlands and could ne set for a repeat at 6/5 with Unibet. Both of Andrej Kramaric's goals in the last four matches have been the opener and the forward can be tipped to score first on Friday at 10/3 with bet365.
This Euro 2024 match between Croatia and Latvia will be played on Sep 8, 2023 and kick off at 19:45. Check below for our tipsters best Croatia vs Latvia prediction. You may also visit our dedicated betting previews section for the most up to date previews.