It is difficult to play on the road mind you, but still, this is Iceland, who is not known for their football. On top of that, you have one of the best midfielders in the world in Luka Modrić, and at striker, you have a Champions League winner in Mario Mandžukić.
On the other side, it was a combination of jubilation and relief as Iceland held on at home for the 0-0 draw. The Iceland squad showed just how bad they wanted to win this playoff series, having been dealt two major blows to their hopes. Just before halftime, Ajax striker Kolbeinn Sigþórsson had to be stretchered off the field due to injury, but there was not need to worry, as he was replaced by legendary Iceland footballer Eiður Smári Guðjohnsen.
The worst came in the 50th minute when right back Ólafur Ingi Skúlason was shown a straight red card on a challenge from behind. Iceland proceeded to play with 10 men for the final 40 minutes, and somehow managed to come away with a draw.
Iceland 0- Croatia 0 (game one)
Iceland to Make History Tomorrow?
“The journey was comfortable and it was great to be able to fly directly,” Lars Lagerbäck told vísir.is yesterday once he and his team had settled in to their hotel in Zagreb, Croatia. Tomorrow the two nations will compete for a place in the 2014 Brazil World Cup.
Croatia is the better team and they are at home, while Iceland is dealing with injuries, cards and the hostile Zagreb crowd.
Iceland24 prediction: Iceland 1, Croatia 1 (Series Tied 1-1, Iceland wins via the Away Goals Rule and advances to the World Cup)