Lovren's Croatia qualify for World Cup quarter-finals


The round of 16 match at Nizhny Novgorod Stadium on Sunday (NZT Monday) was book-ended with drama with two goals in the opening four minutes for a 1-1 scoreline, and then with four minutes to go in injury time a Croatian spot kick was saved.

Both keepers excelled in the shootout, with Kasper Schmeichel saving two but Danijel Subasic's three saves confirmed Croatia's passage to the quarter-final stage. Croatia have impressed with their attacking abilities whereas Denmark have been a ideal mix of creative play and a pragmatic approach.

There was an element of comedy to the fourth-minute equaliser for Mario Mandzukic as Denmark's early advantage quickly disappeared.

From there, the match petered out, with Denmark nullifying Croatia in the second half.

Croatia v Denmark goes to penalty shootout in World Cup last 16.

Pione Sisto: The nimble-footed, wily left winger can possess a lot of questions to Croatia's defence.

As hard as they have been to break down, the Danes have struggled to creative chances with any real fluency in this World Cup.

Denmark will be hoping to get the better of Croatia on Sunday.

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Zlatko Dalic's team won all of their games on the way to running away with Group G but are tasked with overcoming a solid Denmark side, unbeaten thus far in Russian Federation. If Croatia's golden generation are to take this golden opportunity, they must improve on this.

We're away in extra time, 30 minutes away from a possible shootout. Denmark has scored only two goals in its last three games.

Croatia have won all three of their games so far at the 2018 World Cup, which is their longest ever streak of victories in the competition.

Striker Andrej Kramaric came on for Perisic in Croatia's third change and Michael Krohn-Dehli replaced Delaney for Denmark before Kramaric's deflected cross caused anxiety for Schmeichel, who opted to tip it over. "I think we have better players than that team".

GOAL! Denmark take the lead in the first minute!

- Luka Modric is all set to become Croatia's joint most capped player in major tournaments with 18 appearances along with Darijo Srna.

Denmark - Schmeichel 8, Knudsen 7, Jorgensen 6, Kjaer 5, Dalsgaard 6, Delaney 5, Christensen 5, Braithwaite 6, Eriksen 6, Poulsen 7, Cornelius 5.

Luka Modric talks up the threat of Christian Eriksen in Denmark's midfield and admits that Croatia must attempt to stop the playmaker in his tracks.