Move over Igor Akinfeev. After Russia’s goalkeeper made two big saves in penalty kicks to help his team, Croatia’s goalkeeper Danijel Subasic put on his own world-class display, saving three penalty kicks to guide Croatia past Denmark into the quarterfinals.
In a match that finished 1-1 and had plenty of drama, Croatia held off Denmark 3-2 in penalty kicks with the Croatian shot-stopper stepping up at the right time, as his country returns to the quarterfinals for just the second time in history and first time since the 1998 tourney.
Sunday’s match got off to an incredible start, and if you were five minutes late, you missed nearly everything. Denmark scored just a minute into the match as Mathias Jorgensen finished a loose ball in the box off a long throw-in to give the Danish side an early advantage.
But just three minutes later, Mario Mandzukic brought his team level when the ball, fortunately, fell to him in the box:
Then we had to wait 110 minutes for some drama. Croatia was given a penalty kick after Ante Rebic was taken down with a wide open goal in front of him. Jorgensen brought him down from behind, and a yellow card was given as per the recent rule where you can’t have a penalty kick and a red card if the player is going for the ball. But Jorgensen saved what would have surely been a goal, and then his goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel came to the rescue.
Neither team found a breakthrough and the match advanced to a penalty-kick shootout, were each side saved the first attempt before making their next two shots. Subasic made two consecutive stops that gave Croatia the chance to seal it. Ivan Rakitic took care of the rest to send his team through to the quarterfinals:
And with that finish, Croatia is through and will play Russia on Saturday. One win away from a semifinal spot for either, and it’s an enticing match for two teams many didn’t expect a whole lot out of before the tournament. You can stream every World Cup match on fuboTV (Try for free).
Relive commentary from Sunday’s Croatia vs. Denmark match
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