Mateo Kovacic is giving ‘insights’ on his Chelsea team-mates to the Croatia squad, reveals Lille defender Domagoj Bradaric as they plot England’s downfall in Euro 2020 opener… and says the tips will ‘definitely’ help them
- England will face off against Croatia in a tough first test to begin Euro 2020
- Their opponents have been boosted by ‘insights’ from Chelsea’ Mateo Kovacic
- Lille’s Domagoj Bradaric says he has been providing tips on England stars
- Dejan Lovren is also been giving advice after seven years in the Premier League
Chelsea star Mateo Kovacic has been providing the Croatia squad with ‘insights’ on his England team-mates as they bid to down England in the Euro 2020 opener.
The Three Lions face a tough test to kick off their tournament at Wembley on Sunday the 2018 World Cup runners up, and Croatia players have been coming up with a game plan to ensure a miserable start for England, according to Lille defender Domagoj Bradaric.
He said part of that strategy was listening to insider information from their star midfielder Kovacic, who knows three players – Ben Chilwell, Reece James and Mason Mount – very well having played with them at Stamford Bridge.
Mateo Kovacic is giving ‘insights’ to Croatia on his Chelsea team-mates ahead of England clash
The midfielder has spoken to the squad about Reece James (L), Mason Mount (C) and Ben Chilwell (R) after playing with them at Stamford Bridge
Bradaric said Kovacic and Dejan Lovren, who spent seven years in the Premier League with Southampton and Liverpool, had both been providing tips on what Croatia can expect from England, their tactics and ‘mentality’, believing their advice will ‘definitely’ help the squad.
‘We are all talking among ourselves,’ Bradaric said, as reported by the Sun.
‘They are giving us their tips and their insights on what they know and think about the English approach, the English game and their mentality because they have spent time there.
‘It’s going to help us, definitely. We are talking with them and they can help a lot and contribute a lot.’
Lille defender Domagoj Bradaric believes Kovacic’s advice will ‘definitely’ help the team
Mount and Chilwell have just won the Champions League for Chelsea and will be huge threats
Kovacic made 21 starts in the Premier League for Chelsea last season, but was on the bench for the Champions League final – coming on as the Blues beat City 1-0 in Porto. His team-mate Mount set up Kai Havertz’ winner, while full backs James and Chilwell both had excellent games and all three will be huge threats to Croatia.
Croatia, who are in Group D with England alongside Scotland and the Czech Republic, have been working hard on a plan to stop Gareth Southgate’s men, added Bradaric – who scored against England at the Under-21 Euros in March.
‘We are working and we have a plan that we are going to try and implement. ‘We’ve been working on it this week, defensively and offensively, trying everything out and we will see what the team is suited to.
Bradaric (R) who played vs England’s U21s in March, insists the team have a game plan to win
‘I’m hoping [to start] and I am working towards this goal. It’s up to the head coach, but I am 100 per cent ready.’
Bradaric will enter the tournament on a high, having just helped Lille win Ligue 1, stunning PSG, with the left-back featuring 36 times. That winning mentality will be key to Croatia – who boast Champions League winner Kovacic, as well as former Ballon D’or winner Luka Modric.
They also have right-back Sime Vrsaljko, whose Atletico Madrid side won LaLiga, and Inter Milan stars Marcelo Brozovic – fresh off their Serie A title victory.