Talk of Croatian Top Goalscorers rekindles memories of Davor Suker winning the Golden Boot (or Golden Shoe as it was then) at the 1998 World Cup Finals, as Croatia went on to finish third. Suker scored 6 of Croatia’s 11 goals that year.
Croatia haven’t had such a prolific striker since though, and that was part of the problem at both the 2002 and 2006 World Cups at which they only scored 2 goals. They then managed to score 5 goals at the 2014 World Cup Finals, but still failed to progress to the knockout stages from a difficult group containing Brazil and Mexico.
Croatia are probably still lacking a striker capable of matching the feat of Davor Suker, but do have several players who are capable of scoring goals, and it’s just a question of which player might step up when his team needs him most.
2018 World Cup Croatia Top Goalscorer Betting Guide
Mario Mandzukic 2/1, Ivan Perisic 4/1, Nicola Kalinic 4/1, Andrej Kramaric 5/1, Luka Modric 10/1
The experienced 31-year-old Croatian striker has scored goals for the likes of Bayern Munich, Atletico Madrid and Juventus, in the last few seasons, as well as scoring 30 goals in 81 appearances for Croatia. He scored 5 of his team’s 19 goals in World Cup Qualifying and the World Cup Play-Offs, which was two more than any of his team-mates. He also scored twice at the 2014 World Cup Finals, which saw him tie with Periscic as Croatia’s leading goalscorer at the 2014 World Cup Finals.
Perisic also plays in Serie A, but the winger is nowhere near as prolific a scorer as Mandzukic. However, he has scored 17 goals in 63 games for Croatia, 2 of which came in qualifying. He also scored against Cameroon and Mexico at the 2014 World Cup Finals, when he tied with Mandzukic as Croatia’s leading goalscorer. He also scored 2 of Croatia’s goals at the 2016 Euros.
The third Croatian player to be currently playing in Italy, where he is on loan at Milan having previously scored 27 goals in 68 games for Fiorentina. Not as prolific as Mandzukic, he scored 3 goals in qualifying, and also scored at the 2016 Euros.
Scored just 2 goals in 15 games for Leicester City, and has since averaged 1 goal in every 3 games for Hoffenheim, as well as scoring 8 goals in 26 games for his country. Also scored 2 goals in World Cup Qualifying, but unlikely to be a first-choice striker come the World Cup.
Scored just 13 goals for Tottenham in 127 games, and scored even less for Real Madrid despite playing more games. More likely to create chances for others, though scored 1 goal in World Cup Qualifying, and also scored at the 2016 Euros.
If Croatia get amongst the goals at the 2018 World Cup Finals, this should be fought-out between Mandzukic and Perisic. The former is more prolific but, as Perisic has been at least the joint top-scorer for Croatia at the last two major championships, he looks the value at 4/1.