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Tactical switch transforms Croatia from zero to hero - 7 months ago, 12 July 11:58

By: Reuters

Croatia ruthlessly exposed England’s limitations in the second half of the World Cup semi-final on Wednesday as Zlatko Dalic’s side fought back to secure a famous 2-1 extra-time victory.

While it is players who win matches there can be little doubt that a tactical switch from the canny Dalic transformed the game.

Pushing wide players Ante Rebic and Ivan Perisic into more advanced roles was not the most complex move but it was one that turned the match on its head.

Gareth Southgate’s England had made it to the last four by playing a brand of progressive passing football and there was enough of that in the opening 45 minutes, after Kieran Trippier’s fifth-minute goal, to keep them comfortably on top.

Croatia struggled from the outset. They gifted England a huge amount of space in midfield and allowed wing-backs Ashley Young and Trippier to push forward and provide options.

More worryingly for Dalic, the basic ...
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