Modric concerned for Croatia in semi-final

Sergio Cunningham
July 8, 2018

However, it was not to be for the resilient hosts, with goalkeeper Danijel Subasic saving Fedor Smolov's penalty and Fernandes firing wide before Rakitic kept his composure to send Croatia through.

Croatia went on to beat Russian Federation 4-3 on penalties after an emotionally draining quarter-final game yesterday.

Full Time: Russia 1 vs Croatia 2 - Kramaric cancelled out Cheryshev's opener in the first half and there were no goals in the second half.

Ivan Rakitic is hoping this Croatia team can go a step further after matching the country's heroes of 1998 by making it to the semi-finals of the World Cup.

The overachieving hosts, the lowest ranked team in the tournament at No. 70, were trying to make it to the World Cup semifinals for the first time since the Soviet Union finished fourth at the 1966 tournament in England. Both Russia and Croatia had needed extra-time in their matches against Spain and Denmark, respectively, and thus emulated South Korea and Spain, who needed extra time and penalties to separate each other in the last eight of 2002.

England now know their semi-final opponents after Saturday evening's game between Russian Federation and Croatia went the way of Croatia on penalties. "We've already accomplished something big, but we want to do more", he told reporters.

"They fought. It was a real playoff match against not the weakest team in the world".

With the game going into extra time, the tension was higher expectedly.

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More memes, more cheers, more tears will come next week, when France plays Belgium on Tuesday, and England takes on Croatia on Wednesday.

"He watched, he was rooting for the team".

"I criticized the team ahead of the tournament, like everybody else", said Alexei Gerasimov, an engineer from Moscow.

Then Russia left their Croatian counterparts in hot water (well maybe luke warm) as Denis Cheryshev conceded in the 31st minute of the game.

"Talking about criticism, if they trusted us or not, we trusted ourselves".

"We worked so hard and gave everything we had to get through to the semis".

This is the first time in 16 years that two teams took a quarterfinal to extra time, after having played extra time in the round of 16 as well.

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