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Zlatko Dalic: If Croatia can cope with Lionel Messi, they can stop Harry Kane

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Croatia coach sends England warning: Harry Kane is easy work after Lionel Messi
Harry Kane is Englands biggest threat (Picture: Reuters)

Croatia coach Zlatko Dalic believes his side are well placed to cope with Harry Kane after stopping Lionel Messi from performing to the best of his ability.

Messi and Argentina went down to a 3-0 defeat to Croatia during the group stages in what was Dalics team best display to date in the tournament.

England and Croatia go to war on Wednesday night for a spot in the World Cup final, with Three Lions fans praying Kane can return to the freescoring form he showed before the Sweden game.

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Sweden was the only game so far Kane has failed to score in, but Dalic believes Croatia have the players to nullify the Tottenham striker.

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We believe in our strengths, Dalic said.

We dont fear England. He [Kane] is top scorer – hes not easy to stop.

Croatia coach sends England warning: Harry Kane is easy work after Lionel Messi
Croatia kept Lionel Messi quiet (Picture: Getty)
Soccer Football - World Cup - Quarter Final - Sweden vs England - Samara Arena, Samara, Russia - July 7, 2018 England's Harry Kane walks near Sweden's Victor Lindelof after the match REUTERS/Lee Smith
Kane is leading the race for the Golden Boot (Picture: Reuters)

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But we have top centre-backs. We managed to stop Messi and [Christian] Eriksen so hopefully we can stop Kane.

Croatia will be the toughest test yet for England after knockout ties against Sweden and Colombia.

England have found a new confidence playing under Gareth Southgate, and Dalic believes Raheem Sterling is another player Croatia must be wary of.

Soccer Football - World Cup - Quarter Final - Russia vs Croatia - Fisht Stadium, Sochi, Russia - July 7, 2018 Croatia coach Zlatko Dalic gestures REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov
Zlatko Dalic believes Croatia have the players to stop England (Picture: Reuters)
Croatia coach sends England warning: Harry Kane is easy work after Lionel Messi
Raheem Sterling does a lot of running for England (Picture: Getty)

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Croatia coach sends England warning: Harry Kane is easy work after Lionel Messi
Most of England goals have come through set-pieces (Picture: Getty)

I wouldnt say there are any glaring weaknesses – they are in the semi-finals, that says it all, he said.

They showed from the games Ive seen so far that they play direct football and they are very fast.

They are really good at set-pieces and their tall players are dangerous at corners. I think Raheem Sterling is an important player because he is really fast and his combination with Harry Kane is really dangerous.

MORE: England injury news: Jordan Henderson and Jamie Vardy set to be fit for Croatia game

MORE: Jordan Henderson reveals texts from Jurgen Klopp during Englands World Cup campaign

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