A look back at their last semi-final run

Russia players celebrate

Russia have defied all expectations Credit reuters

CROATIA is going nuts about their team's appearance in the World Cup semi-finals - but one group of fans had particular reason to celebrate during their penalty shootout win over Russian Federation.

"This makes us extremely proud that after 20 years we've reached the semis of the World Cup", the 32-year-old Modric added.

"At certain times we lacked power but we played two times 120 minutes of football in six days", Modric said.

The Croats hadn't advanced to the semifinals at the World Cup since 1998, when the country made its first appearance.

"We watched the game today and saw how good they are from dead-ball situations".

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"It's an adventure", said McNulty.

"We should have finished the job before penalties, but maybe it's written in the stars that we have to go through the extra drama", said Luka Modric, whose penalty bounced off Subasic's hand and the post before entering the other side of the net.

The victor in Wednesday's semifinal match at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow will return there for a final on Sunday against France, which beat Belgium 1-0 in St. Petersburg on Tuesday.

The Russians as hosts did not need to qualify for the World Cup and their ranking of 70 in the world was the lowest among all teams in Russia, even lower than global football minnows Saudi Arabia.

Tottenham won the race for the Croatian in 2008, paying a then club record-equalling £16.5m for a player, who nevertheless initially struggled to adapt to the pace of the Premier League, amid fears his stature would work against him. We were unlucky at previous tournaments but now we are collecting those debts this year, ' said Modric after Saturday's win over Russian Federation in Sochi. "We have the strength and quality to do that". Croatia, known for its rough play on the field, will have to compete with England which has been playing aas a unit and is buoyed by the terrific progress the side has made in this tournament.

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The Russian Embassy in the United Kingdom also offered their condolences at the loss of Sturgess. A 45-year-old man named Charlie Rowley was still in hospital and is in critical condition.

"That was a great success for Croatia as a nation, and we are on the right track to repeat that feat".

Harry Kane looked tired at the end of Saturday's game, and Jordan Henderson was taken off as a precaution. Numerous Croatia players said arriving in Sochi immediately after the round of 16 win over Denmark was a major benefit, but now are facing a rapid recovery. "We're immensely privileged to be in the World Cup final". We want to continue on their way and hopefully we can take a step further tomorrow.

This World Cup has seen unexpected teams taking their position in the semi-finals with their determination and skill.

And while he didn't score against Sweden on Saturday, Kane still played his part in a confident England display.

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The 27-year-old, who has always been linked to Real Madrid , is now starring for Belgium at the World Cup in Russian Federation . He said: "Does Real make me dream less without Zidane?" This lot, ha, don't know what a vacation is.But that's the choice.

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