Kranjcar: Croatia aiming to beat England

November 18, 2007

SKOPJE, Nov 18 (Reuters) - Croatia are determined to beat England in their final Euro 2008 qualifier next week to show their quality, midfielder Niko Kranjcar said on Saturday.

The Group E leaders have already reached the finals in Austria and Switzerland while England need a draw at Wembley on Wednesday to guarantee joining them at next year's tournament.

'The atmosphere at Wembley will be very special and it is our duty to play our best football, to demonstrate our quality and stamp our authority,' the Portsmouth midfielder said after Croatia's 2-0 defeat in Macedonia on Saturday.

Despite losing, Croatia still reached the finals after Russia were stunned 2-1 in Israel, also opening the door for England to qualify.

Croatia have 26 points with England on 23 while third-placed Russia are on 21 and can still qualify if they win their final match in Andorra and Croatia beat England.

'We're obliged to put in a fully committed performance if for no other reason than because Israel showed what a proud and honest nation they are and we have to do exactly the same,' Kranjcar said.