World Cup 2018: Russia and Croatia in Quarter Final, in a fatal World Cup

World Cup 2018
Russia and Croatia qualify for the World Cup 2018 Quarter finals

Spain, crowned in 2010, was ejected by a surprising Russia, who will face in the quarter finals of “its” World Cup 2018, Croatia, victorious over Denmark.

And another favourite on the carpet! Spain, crowned in 2010, was ejected by a surprising Russia, who will face in the quarter finals of “its” World Cup 2018, Croatia, who were victorious over Denmark . Sunday’s matches of the last 16 decided on penalties .

Hierarchy overturned

You said suspense and decisive guardians? “Sbornaya first thwarted the odds after a stifling shots on goal (4 goals to 3, 1-1 ap). Hero: goalkeeper Igor Akinfeev, with two saves.

And it was even more crazy with Croatia who defeated Denmark in another thrilling shootout (3 to 2, 1-1). Hero: goalkeeper Danijel Subasic, with three saves.

Russians and Croats are now meeting next Saturday in Sochi (8pm French time) in a competition which is turning spicy. For the Russian tournament was without mercy for the strongholds of world football: Germany, defending champion, was eliminated in the pools; Portugal, on the European champions and Argentina, runner-up world champion, were eliminated in the first of the knockout matches.

Not to mention the ten Golden Balls that leave the tournament with the departures of Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi. Will a new world football order emerge?

Russian goalkeeper Igor Akinfeev blocks a goal of the World Cup 2018 on 1st July 2018.
Russian goalkeeper Igor Akinfeev blocks a goal in the World Cup 2018 on 1st July 2018. (© AFP / Antonin THUILLIER)

Croatia is scared

It was not necessary to arrive late to Nizhny Novgorod on Sunday: The two goals were scored very quickly, with Mathias Jorgensen for Denmark in the first minute, then Mario Mandzukic three minutes later for Croatia.

And then nothing until three minutes before the end of the extension. Foolish scene: Real Madrid crack Luka Modric misses his penalty kick, pulling in the gloves of Kasper Schmeichel, Danish goalkeeper playing under the eyes of his father, Peter, ex-Manchester United’s former goalkeeper.

Croatians qualify for the quarter-finals of the World Cup 2018
Croatians Luka Modric (L) and Mario Mandzukic qualify for the quarter-finals of the World Cup 2018 on 1 July 2018. (© AFP / Alexander NEMENOV)

It was necessary to come to a penalty shoot-out that consecrated Subasic. The Croatians can blow: they will not relive the disillusionment of the Euro-2016, where, brilliant in the first round, they were then collapsed in the first game chopper.

Modric, who wants to invite himself in the race for the Golden Ball, now that Ronaldo and Messi are eliminated, has caught up well in the penalty shoot-out by making his attempt. All is well that ends well for him.

Moscow in celebration

The Russian capital has turned into a crazy party in the streets with the qualification of his “Sbornaya” for quarters. ” It’s huge. Unbelievable. We are champions (not yet, ed). We now believe that we will be in the final against Brazil, “enthused Anna Glazkova, 27, in charge of human relations, crossed by AFP in a pedestrian artery.

Stanislav Cherchesov, the coach of Russia, made him sober: “We always want to say thank you to our players, and it is even more true today.”

Yet no one would have bet on “Sbornaya”, who had not won a match in 2018 before the tournament started. “We spent two years working (for this World Cup) and we did a good job,” explained Russia’s most famous mustache.

Can the “Sbornaya” repeat the Euro-2008 when she reached the semi-finals? In any case, she took revenge on Spain, who had eliminated her.

The last match for Spains Iniesta

It was the last match under the colors of Spain veteran Andres Iniesta (34). “It was not the most beautiful farewell, but football and life are like that. I leave with a bad taste and hard, “said Don” Andres, very affected in mixed zone. A page turns for this part of the Roja (world title of 2010, Euros 2008 and 2012) which also leaves Barça for Vissel Kobe (Japan).

Spain succumbs once more to the host country at the World Cup, as against Italy in 1934, Brazil in 1950 and especially South Korea in 2002. The same spell escorts them even at the World Championships. Europe, where she never managed to beat the organizing country in five attempts (1980, 1984, 1988, 1996, 2004) …

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