Croatia working extra, says it will have enough for England

Heather Diaz
July 10, 2018

The official match attendance for Saturday's clash against Sweden in Samara was 39,991, which meant there were 1,979 empty seats - a remarkable number for a World Cup quarter-final. We have two matches to play and we are very motivated.

This is the first time they have reached the knock-out phase since and Luka Modric reckons their good fortune is long overdue.

The overachieving hosts, the lowest ranked nation in the tournament, were trying to make it to the World Cup semifinals for the first time since the Soviet Union team finished fourth at the 1966 tournament in England.

They had also needed spot kicks to get past a dogged Denmark in the last 16, but Modric insisted they would not be exhausted for the last-four clash against England. "Of course this will leave a mark on you. But thank God we've shown our character".

"It's a great story for me, it was my first time outside Croatia, everything was really new", he said. We made ourselves happy and also everyone back in Croatia happy. "I just got here on Thursday and I saw Luka in the hotel's restaurant". "Cry God for Harry, England and St George!" said the Sunday Telegraph.

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Jenkins also showed us a glimpse of Chris Pine's character, Steve Trevor who is apparently somehow returning from the dead!

In the Croatia match, he came on as a substitution in the 102nd minute and scored a goal for his side during the penalty shootout.

However, with five minutes of extra time left, Russia's defender Mario Fernandes equalized for the hosts, taking the game to penalties. The unique elements of playing in Sochi with the combination of heat and humidity sapped energy from both teams, creating a fairly lethargic second half.

The biggest question mark now surrounds the fitness of a team who have gone the full distance in their last two matches and had several players struggling with injuries against Russian Federation.

The Golden Ball, won by Lionel Messi in 2014, is the award given to the best player in the World Cup and Croatia striker Mandzukic believes his teammate should definitely be a frontrunner due to his performances in Russian Federation so far.

Inter are due to meet Atletico Madrid to discuss a deal for right-back Sime Vrsaljko but continue to monitor alternative options to the Croatian, according to Corriere dello Sport. Martinez hopes to succeed where they failed by employing a two-year process to ensure "this is a team, this is not a group of individuals".

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