Russian Federation salutes ‘heroes’ after Croatia ends World Cup dream

Fast forward just over 28 years and on Wednesday evening in Moscow they will play one again.

Against Colombia, the Three Lions faced stiff competition as the Colombians were physical in their approach to the game.

Croatia fans in Zagreb, meanwhile, erupted with joy as their side went through to the semi finals of the World Cup in what was the second straight match for both teams to be decided on a penalty shootout.

Croatia is the first team to win consecutive penalty shootouts since Argentina in 1990 and it's the first time the host country has lost in a shootout since Italy in the same year.

"Those who are hard working, who are compact, who are united and who are well organised, they are here in Russian Federation, and this is the character of the four teams remaining in the tournament".

They must recover quickly from a draining night before facing England, who were 2-0 winners over Sweden earlier on Saturday.

While there's been some sympathy for Gareth Southgate, it looks like England will have to bring football home without the support of most Scots.

This was the first time since 1994 that a team tied a match after going behind in extra-time.


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

Stuff football writers Ben Strang and Phillip Rollo make their predictions for the World Cup semifinals.

"Thank you for the honest, genuine emotions you gave us thoughout the World Cup", they wrote.

Russian Federation felt they should have had a penalty in the first half of extra time but the referee was right to turn down the appeals. They needed a penalty shoot-out to see off Denmark in the last 16, though, after Modric had missed from the spot in extra time. Akinfeev made one save during the shootout and almost had another on Luka Modric, but the shot deflected off Akinfeev's hand, off the post and into the net.

Croatia set up to take this game to the opposition, ditching a traditional midfield and effectively lining up in a 4-2-4.

They were terrific in getting a two-goal lead against Brazil and then put in a mature second half display to hold off the fightback from their South American opponents.

With Croatia advancing to the World Cup semifinals for the first time since 1998, a video clip of the country's president celebrating wildly from the stands has gone viral.

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