The countdown is on. We are now just days away from the World Cup Final, and the big shock is that one of England or Croatia will be in Sunday’s showdown. The two sides have had kind routes to the semi-finals, and they will both know they will never get an ‘easier’ opportunity to win the World Cup.
Of course, these two nations are still 90 minutes away from the final, but it's a remarkable achievement given it's just the third time England have made the semis (one final) and only the second occasion Croatia have reached the last four (0 finals). France or Belgium await in perhaps the most open World Cup in the modern era.
Man of the Match ratings boosts are being given out on FIFA 18, in the World Cup Ultimate Team mode. At the end of each matchday, you can vote for your favourite player on the EA Sports FIFA website. Those chosen will see their FIFA World Cup Ultimate Team cards updated, so players you currently have could be boosted. Otherwise, cards can be found on the FUT store or unlocked through challenges.
RealSport predicts who could receive a boost from the second semi-final.
Luka Modric (OVR 91 – 92)
Luka Modric makes the Croatian team tick, but can he dig deep again after back-to-back penalty shootout victories? The Real Madrid superstar didn't have his typical influence against Russia playing in a two-man midfield but expect him to be freed up against England.
If Modric can get closer to the goal, and exploit the gaps left by England’s two roaming midfielders Dele Alli (OVR 83) and Jesse Lingard (OVR 83), he can get Croatia going again and help them reach a first ever World Cup final.
Keep an eye on: Ivan Perisic (OVR 85)
Ivan Rakitic (OVR 89 – 91)
Modric’s partner in crime is Ivan Rakitic. If Modric is to be operating close to a number 10 role, then Rakitic will be in charge of starting attacks for the Croats. The Barcelona midfielder will look to quell England’s breaks forward and then hit passes to Modric or spread the play to the flanks.
Legs will be the issue though, and it will be down to Rakitic and Modric to dictate the tempo for the Croatian team. The question is whether Zlatko Dalic’s men sit back and try to hit England on the counter, which doesn’t get the most of their prize midfielders, or do they take the game to England, with a third match of extra time out of the question.
Keep an eye on: Mario Mandzukic (OVR 83)
Harry Kane (OVR 88 – 90)
England’s 2-0 win over Sweden was the first game Harry Kane failed to score as captain of his country. Given he had scored in the previous eight games, including a hat trick against Panama and brace against Tunisia, he will be far from alarmed, but England will look to their star man to fire them into the World Cup Final.
The Tottenham striker has bagged six goals so far in the tournament, and it may only take one more to secure the Golden Boot. Every great team needs a leader, and Kane has shown already what he does for this team. Can he do it again in the biggest game of his career?
Keep an eye on: Jesse Lingard (OVR 83)
Dele Alli (OVR 83 – 85)
Dele Alli ended his 13-game goal-scoring drought for England with the winner against Sweden, and the Tottenham man can now use that as a platform to kick on. This is a player who has scored 37 goals from midfield in just three Premier League seasons, it's time to show that quality on the grandest stage.
With a licence to run beyond the forwards, Alli can take advantage of an inconsistent Croatian defence and notch once again. Forwards Harry Kane and Raheem Sterling (OVR 84) will occupy the defence, allowing Dele to ghost into the box.
Keep an eye on: Kieran Trippier (OVR 85)