That was ******** heroic from croatia.
Think about this:
- Croatia were drawn in a harder group, no easy games. Had to beat Argentina to win the group, which they did.
- Croatia played two back to back 120 minute games against Denmark and Russia.
- England had the easiest group - all they had to do was beat lowly Panama and Tunisia, which they did quite comfortably.
- England rested most of their starting lineup in their third group game against Belgium. They won their QF in regulation time.
So England essentially, in terms of total minutes - had played almost a match and a half less than Croatia to get this far.
I checked the odds yesterday, England were 8/13 to win. Everyone expected the well-rested team to win this game, and rightly so.
But the extra rest didn't count for s---. Why? Croatia played their a** off, they played like their lives depended on it.
They never panicked after going 0-1 down in the first 5 minutes. They were brave enough to leave more players up front; never afraid to concede another goal. They trusted their defense, they were confident in 1x1 situations. Their midfielders chased down every ball, every loose ball was kept inside and played forward. Goalkeeper looked like he had ice in his veins, never looked like making a mistake.
The game went to extra time, but Croatia never stopped attacking. They didn't want this to go to penalties. They kept pushing. And they finally broke England. They also broke the cameraman's equipment after scoring the winning goal, but repaid him with a sloppy kiss. Amusing.
Croatia are warriors, they are heroes. Whatever happens in the final, they earned the world's respect and they'll always be seen as heroes.