England are out for revenge on bogey side Croatia in their Euro 2020 opener on Sunday at 3pm.
The Group D clash at Wembley is a rematch of the 2018 World Cup semifinal, a game the Three Lions led before Player of the Tournament Luka Modric masterminded his team’s 2-1 extra-time win to book a place in the final.
England midfielder Declan Rice, who watched as a fan that day, is out to stop the man who won the Ballon d’Or that year.
He tells the Evening Standard: “Then I was miles away from Modric. He’s a world-class player, but it doesn’t faze me at all.”
So confident is the West Ham man that he is already looking forward to “the bigger teams”, saying: “In our first game we’ve got Modric… but hopefully as we progress, we start to face the top, top teams, the world-class teams like France.”
Croatia’s former Liverpool defender Dejan Lovren warned England that they know how to beat them, with Chelsea midfielder Mateo Kovacic giving his span the inside info.
Lovren says: “England have unbelievable talent in their squad. When you look at all the players and how they are playing at the moment, it’s quite scary.
“But… we know what it is to go to the final, to the end.”
England and Croatia headline an opening weekend that kicks off with Turkey facing Italy tonight at 9pm, with the clash between Belgium and Russia being tomorrow’s main attraction.