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'The most important thing for me is that my national team succeeded and that we do something big.

"It makes us extremely proud and happy that after 20 years we've reached the semi-final of a World Cup", the former Tottenham midfielder said.

France and Belgium will contest the other last-four tie in Saint Petersburg on Tuesday. Rakitic I haven't played against but I played against Modric twice this year in the Champions League and everyone knows what he did in the Premier League.

He added that he would have retired as professional footballer earlier if not for the World Cup and now plans to become a coach. We made ourselves happy, but also everyone back in Croatia happy - I don't cry often, but now I had good cause, ' he told reporters.

This was quickly followed up with a 3-1 win over Egypt and Cherchesov's team punching their ticket for the Round of 16. "Brazil are a top team, like England, they have a similar style in some ways in terms of attacking football". Igor Akinfeev later blocked Mateo Kovacic's shot.

Zlatko Dalic's men defeated tournament hosts Russian Federation 4-3 on penalties after a topsy-turvy 2-2 stalemate in Sochi on Saturday.

England vs. Sweden final score, recap
If successful, they will play in their first final at the competition since they won the trophy in 1966. We've got a long way to go. "We've done great up until now, but we have another step to overcome".

They handed them possession and despite playing four times fewer passes than Spain's 1,137 over 120 minutes, they successfully shut them out of their box.

However, with five minutes of extra time left, Russia's defender Mario Fernandes equalized for the hosts, taking the game to penalties.

President Vladimir Putin did not attend the game, but watched remotely, saying the players were heroes despite the defeat and the country was proud of them. Starting right back Sime Vrsaljko had to be replaced during extra time with an apparent leg injury, though fellow defender Dejan Lovren was optimistic Sunday that Vrsaljko would be able to play with the semifinal looming on Wednesday.

There have even been calls for Modric to win the Ballon d'Or award, given to the best player in a calendar year.

It has been suggested Croatia should be favourites given the experienced players they boast in their squad, thereby increasing the pressure on them to reach the final, but Mandzukic says they are enjoying their time in Russian Federation now more than ever. There is disappointment but we showed that you can be proud of the Sbornaya because we played worthy football.


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