Croatia scores a late equalizer in extra-time and then wins penalties to upset Brazil.
Croatia has knocked out Brazil, tournament favorites at the World Cup by beating five-time champions 4-2 in penalty shootout in the quarterfinals after drawing 1-1 for 120 minutes.
After defeating Japan on penalties in 16 of the previous 16, the 2018 runners-up won their second consecutive shootout. They will now face either Argentina or the Netherlands, who will play each other later.
The Croatians remained calm at the penalty spot. Dominik Livakovic, goalkeeper, saved Rodrygo from a penalty attempt. Marquinhos scored the goal just moments later.
The Education City Stadium Stadium saw a tense opening match on Friday. There was no separation between tournament favorites Brazil or Croatia. Both teams had half chances, but nothing was clear.
Croatia had the best chance of the second half. Ivan Perisic couldn’t miss a Mario Pasalic cross past Alisson’s goalpost after 13 minute.
The Brazilians, who have lost all of their five previous games, are now in the midst of a losing streak. World Cup quarter-finals to European opposition. They got off to a much stronger start in the second half and were close again in the 65th when Lucas Paqueta’s goal was denied by Livakovic.
The Croatia keeper kept busy and stopped Neymar at the 76th. He had also saved seven more matches than Alisson in Brazil.
Five minutes later, Livakovic rebuffed another shot from Paqueta. The few hundred Brazilian fans grew more impatient, and the match entered extra time. Tite was visibly nervous.
After Brazil led 1-0 after 90 minutes. Neymar’s solo magic gave Brazil a little extra time, but Croatia was determined to win and scored when Bruno Petkovic scored in 117th.
Neymar’s goal tied him with Pelé as Brazil’s all-time leading goalscorer with 77 goals.
Next, Croatia will face Argentina or the Netherlands. They play later tonight.
More to come.