Croatia hold wasteful England in empty stadium

John Stones and Gareth Southgate on the pitch

John Stones and Gareth Southgate on the pitch

Kane hit the crossbar with a header and had a goal ruled out for offside in the goalless draw with Croatia, but he has not scored for England since netting against Colombia at the World Cup.

Kane saw an effort ruled out for offside and seemingly broke the net in the process, leading to a pause in play that saw England fans get a wave from Pickford.

The game was built up by some English media as a chance for the visitors to avenge Croatia's 2-1 World Cup semi-final win in Russian Federation in July but the game failed to produce any fireworks.

"He buried that chance but was just offside, but Harry will get us goals", Southgate said.

England, who also had a weak penalty shout rejected for Mateo Kovacic's clip on clubmate Ross Barkley, introduced Jadon Sancho for the final 12 minutes.

"We were able to get more pressure higher up the pitch, we were able to get tighter to their midfielder".

A goalless draw was fitting of an empty experience with supporters shut out of the 8,000 capacity HNK Rijeka stadium, perched on a hilltop overlooking the Adriatic Sea.

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England had another chance to put in a threatening delivery soon afterwards when Harry Kane was fouled, but Chilwell's pass was too long for John Stones. "They were the only ones here".

Apart from a few songs from a handful of industrious England fans who watched the action from the top of a nearby hill, the game was played in silence. "He is not here and we need to respect his decision".

Since finishing as runner-up at the 2018 FIFA World Cup, Croatia has drawn Portugal 1-1 before being thrashed by Spain, 6-0, in its first Natoins League contest.

Dier headed Jordan Henderson's corner off the post a minute before the break.

Dalic complained after a 6-0 thrashing at the hands of Spain that his side were still worn out from their summer exertions and they faded again as England took control at the start of the second period. They will bring a star-studded team into Friday's game, with Real Madrid's Luka Modric leading the pack.

But on both occasions the Manchester United forward produced weak finishes to Dominik Livakovic's left-hand side and the Dinamo Zagreb goalkeeper made comfortable saves. "We should have been more ruthless".

The Borussia Dortmund wonder kid showed some impressive touches but couldn't provide a final spark as England had to settle for a point.

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