Croatia responded to their goalless draw with Morocco in their first Group F match by defeating Canada 4-1 on Sunday, improving their chances of making it out of the group stage while also eliminating the Maple Leafs.

Alphonso Davies gave Canada the lead after just 67 seconds, making the Checkered Ones work hard for the three points. However, goals from Andrej Kramaric and Marko Livaja toward the end of the first half turned the game around.

Kramaric then scored his second goal of the game 20 minutes from the end, and Lovro Majer, who had been on the bench, came off to seal the three points in extra time and give Croatia the lead in Group F.

The 2018 World Cup runners-up need only a draw against Belgium to secure their place in the knockout stages as Zlatko Dalic’s team currently leads their group with four points, narrowly ahead of Morocco in second on goals scored. If Morocco fails to defeat Canada by a margin greater than the Checkered Ones, a victory would secure first place.

Four years after achieving their best-ever finish at a major tournament by placing third at the World Cup in Russia, Belgium’s golden generation is now facing the prospect of a potential early exit at the group stage in Qatar.

The Red Devils were fortunate to win their opening Group F match, a 1-0 victory over a valiant Canada team, but their good fortune ran out against Morocco, who defeated them 2-0 on Sunday thanks to two late goals from Romain Saiss and Zakaria Aboukhlal.

De Bruyne’s puzzling assertions that he and his teammates are “too old” to win the World Cup haven’t helped Belgium’s cause at all, and they’re even more puzzling given that Brazil and Argentina, two of this year’s pre-tournament favourites, both have older squads on average.

The Red Devils need to defeat Croatia in order to secure their spot in the round of 16, and Roberto Martinez is under pressure to get his team out of the group.

However, if Morocco loses to Canada by three goals or more, a draw will only be good for a top-two finish.

What does the betting market think?

1×2 Betting Odds

The betting market has no idea where this one is going to sway, with dead even odds.

The odds of a Croatia win stand @ 2.78, while those of Belgium stand @ 2.74.

The possibility of a stalemate stands @ 3.41.

While Croatia only needs a draw to advance to the round of 16, Belgium must play well on Thursday in order to advance out of Group F and avoid a disappointing early exit.

Belgium has individual stars who, on their day, can make the difference when it matters.

However, Dalic’s well-balanced Croatian team has looked stronger after the first two group games, and it could be that the 2018 champions come out on top.

Total goals over/under

The odds that the total number of goals score will be over 2.5, stands @ 2.1.

While the odds that the total number of goals will be under 2.5, stands @ 1.86.

So the market thinks this will be a tight game, but anyone’s game.