Arsenal striker Eduardo received a two-match ban from UEFA "for deceiving the referee" during the Champions League match against Celtic - and the 26-year-old has already felt the backlash when he came off the bench for his club against Manchester United just before the international break.
With Luka Modric out because of a broken leg, the onus will be on Eduardo to provide the creative spark against England in a match where Fabio Capello's men can seal their place at the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa™ with victory.
"Eduardo is a complete man and a complete person," said Bilic. "He's great as a player, great as a person, great as a father. I can say that because I've known him since he was 17 - so I know. It can only motivate you more. He knows that he is 100 per cet, horizontally, vertically, diagonally, 100 per cent honest."
Modric is not the only player missing for Bilic, with Vedran Corluka suspended and Stipe Pletikosa also injured. The latest player to pull out is Genoa midfielder Ivan Juric. That has complicated the chances of a repeat of two years ago when Bilic famously masterminded the victory at Wembley that denied England a place at UEFA EURO 2008, leading to Capello replacing Steve McClaren as manager.
England are now a different proposition under their Italian coach, according to Bilic - so when he says they have lost their "Englishness" he means it as a compliment. "With those words, I praised Capello and the English team," said the former West Ham defender. "I didn't say anything negative. I didn't say that they'd lost Englishness.
"I said, in a positive way, that Mr Capello is one of the best managers in the world; they are more organised, more solid; they control games almost completely, and they don't leave opponents five yards of space," he explained. "They are playing differently now. They should be better at a World Cup - if they qualify, of course. They will still have six months to train together and will be together for three or four weeks, so they will be better and better."
Bilic has been through DVDs of the Wembley game two years ago and England's 4-1 win last season in Zagreb when Theo Walcott's hat-trick proved the difference. "Of course, the best way to show my players what we did well and what we did wrong was to show them some actions from the game at Wembley and some from the game of Zagreb," he said.
Bilic's men took full advantage of Scott Carson's blunder during their last trip to Wembley - but the Croatia boss feels Robert Green being Capello's second choice will not be a factor. "Green is a very consistent goalkeeper at West Ham," he said. "He is not a weak link in the side. He was good against Slovenia as well, and against Holland. He's a great goalkeeper, very calm and very good."