We all remember Croatia’s game-winning penalty against Russia in the 2018 World Cup, and if you don’t, allow us to refresh your memory.
It was 1:1 between Russia and Croatia in the quarterfinal of the World Cup, forcing the two nations to go into extra time as soon as the final whistle blew. It was Croatia’s second consecutive match playing extra time after defeating Denmark in the round of 16 days earlier.
Croatia was tired, and Russia, the host nation of the tournament, was playing impeccable football. Domagoj Vida scored in the 100th minute to bring Croatia up 1:2, but Russia equalized in the 115th minute to bring the game into penalties.
Marcelo Brozović was first up for Croatia, knocking the ball in the back of the net. Mateo Kovačić missed next, which was followed by two goals by Modrić and Vida. Since Russia had missed two penalties, it was up to Croatia’s final shooter, Barcelona midfielder Ivan Rakitić, to seal Croatia’s fate for the semifinal.
Rakitić had scored the winning penalty against Denmark in the round of 16, and with the pressure on for him to repeat his success, many of us weren’t sure he’d be so lucky.
But there it was, a brilliant strike into the left corner to advance Croatia into the semifinal of the World Cup. An incredible celebration followed.
Rakitić’s game-winning penalty was so popular, it even prompted a re-enactment by Croatia’s youngest fans.
Check out the mini-version of Rakitić’s winning penalty against Russia, complete with Drago Ćosić’s unforgettable commentary.