Croatia ends Russia's run, advances to World Cup semifinals

Axel Schmidt

Axel Schmidt

Croatia beat hosts Russian Federation 4-3 on penalties after the teams were level at 2-2 following extra time in their World Cup quarter-final on Saturday and will meet England in the semi-finals.

"The whole of our nation is euphoric, they are upbeat, there are parties going on when Croatia play, they are out in the squares, out in the cafes.it's great that our president is going to be there tomorrow", Dalic said.

Croatia then went ahead with a soft header in the eleventh minute of extra time but Brazilian-born Fernandes headed the hosts level with five minutes of play remaining to send the game to penalties.

The match began when Croatian fans started to re-enact their own version of Iceland's "Viking thunder-clap" - you know, the one where they all clap really slowly and chant in ideal unison.

Denis Cheryshev fired the hosts into a 31st minute lead with a spectacular strike but Andrej Kramaric headed home to make it 1-1 six minutes before the half-time break.

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Instead, the 36 year old displayed her toned pins in the midi-dress, elongating her height in a pair of nude court shoes. It was the first time she's worn a dress by a male designer since becoming a royal.

The Villarreal left winger launched a 25-yard shot that nestled into the top-left corner. Only Belgium have had more with nine (excluding own goals). Igor Akinfeev later blocked an attempt from Mateo Kovacic.

Both sides were probing for the second goal in the closing minutes of the first stanza, but they went into the dressing room deadlocked at 1-1.

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

Croatia's victory will see them take on England in the semi-finals of the World Cup on Wednesday.

Fernandes scored off Alan Dzagoev's free kick in the 115th minute, making the home crowd go insane and restoring faith at the time, when it appeared a semifinal berth was slipping away. We all knew what was next.

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