Croatia Are Through To The Semi-Finals After A Penalty Shootout

Croatia Are Through To The Semi-Finals After A Penalty Shootout

The Croatian football team made the two-hour and twenty flight from Sochi to Moscow on Sunday afternoon where it will take on England in the semi-final of the World Cup.

Media had labelled the game the "crucial match of this generation", stressing it was a chance to match the success of the 1998 squad that reached the semi-finals in Croatia's first World Cup as an independent nation.

TRT World's Lance Santos reports from Sochi.

Many Ukrainians and Kremlin critics have slammed FIFA's staging of the World Cup in Russian Federation and say the tournament serves to whitewash Moscow's human rights record and aggression in Ukraine.

The weariness in their last-16 clash with Denmark is a concern but they look must-bet material at 6/5 to win this in 90 minutes.

In turn, thousands of ecstatic fans showed up on Vorobyovy Gory on Sunday to thank their heroes for an awesome World Cup. The most immediate worry appears to be starting right back Sime Vrsaljko, who had to be replaced during extra time, walking slowly off the field with an apparent leg injury.

France's best is yet to come in the 2018 World Cup, and that's bad news for Belgium.

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Luka Modric is the team's star but it is goalkeeper Subasic who got them past the finishing line against Russian Federation.

The hosts went ahead thanks to a bolt from the blue just after the half-hour mark.

Earlier this week, Ukrainian goalkeeper Mikhail Gotra had his contract with FC Karpaty terminated for cheering on Russian Federation on his Instagram page following their round-of-16 win over Spain.

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

Domagoj Vida headed Luka Modric's corner home 10 minutes into the first extra period, only for Fernandes, the Brazil-born defender who was only granted Russian Federation citizenship by president Vladimir Putin two years ago, to keep Russia's hopes alive in a dramatic finish. The game ended 2-2 after extra time.

Vida was booked moments later after removing his top during his goal celebration.

However, Russia found the resources to draw level again, substitute Alan Dzagoev holding up a free-kick for Fernandes to head home in the 115th minute. Facing their dreaded penalty shootout curse straight on, the Englishmen kept their nerves and eventually eliminated Colombia and went on the quarters.

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