Mandzukic sends Croatia to first World Cup final

Croatia vs England Key battles for World Cup semi-final

It stayed level at 90 minutes, meaning Croatia faced extra time for the third successive game, having got past Denmark and Russian Federation on penalties.

"Until they scored [the equaliser] we were always under cosh", Kane said.

"We created some good chances when we were 1-0 up, maybe we dropped a little too deep but we didn't get enough pressure on the ball".

When the final whistle blew and they knew they were going to their first World Cup final, the Croatians ran to their jumping and cheering fans in their iconic red-and-white checkered jerseys.

"There's a lot we could have done better".

The victory sent Croatia into their first-ever World Cup final, where they will meet France on Sunday.

Josip Pivaric of Croatia celebrates his Fifa World Cup semifinal win over England. However, we showed again that we are not exhausted, we dominated the game physically, mentally, in all aspects.

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England had got off to a flying start when Trippier curled a superb free kick into the top corner in the opening minutes. It hurts, I don't know what else to say, it hurts. There's nothing better, when people are writing you off and saying "you're not fit to wear the shirt", slagging people off, it's kind of saying: 'Well, there you go - have that back at you.' But we do it for ourselves as well. Midfielder Perisic was outstanding in the second half and caused England no end of problems. There will be legitimate questions about how much they have left in the tank.

"But knockout football is fine margins and when you have spells in the game and when you have chances against real quality, you've got to make them count".

Croatia’s Mario Mandzukic and scores his team’s second goal during the World Cup semifinal against England at Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow on July 11, 2018.

Defender Vrsaljko was also instrumental, clearing a shot off the line in the first half of extra time as well as setting up Perisic's equaliser. I can't tell you how proud I am to share the dressing room with these players.

Croatia will take on France in the final on Sunday.

England´s forward Harry Kane (L) and England´s coach Gareth Southgate react after losing the Russian Federation 2018 World Cup semi-final match between Croatia and England at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow on July 11, 2018.

But he is yet to fully convince and win the trust of everyone, and is still susceptible to occasional errors, highlighted by his stray pass that allowed Russian Federation a chance to go clear on goal in the closing minutes of the quarter-final.

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