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Kovač: “Mexico Preparations at Full Steam, it is Our Final”

CroatiaCroatia has returned back to their Praia do Forte camp from Manaus, with coach Niko Kovač already fully focussed on Monday’s do-or-die match with Mexico…

“We are already in full steam preparing for Mexico. We need to win, we are working towards that. We have watched all of Mexico’s matches, there are no surprises. We know their strengths and weaknesses, and I believe in my side. We have prepared excellent for two matches already, so why not for the third?,” said Kovač, who gave his players a day off on Thursday to recover from the long trip and exhausting conditions in Manaus.

Mexico’s 0-0 draw midweek with Brazil means that a draw for Croatia will only do if Cameroon can cause an unlikely upset and beat Brazil.

“Mexico is strong, but so are we. They have a strong attack, and defence. It will be difficult, but we are hoping for victory. Our confidence has grown, as has Mexico’s. It is a final for both sides, the winner advances to the second round,” Kovač said.

Croatia will have a light training run on Friday, and will have one day less to prepare than they did for the Cameroon match. One thing Kovač will be thankful for is that all his squad will be available for selection, with no injury or card troubles. (pic: Drago Sopta / HNS)

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