Every player rated as Croatia triumph in tense penalty shoot-out against Denmark


Luka Modric insists his midfield battle with Christian Eriksen will be just a sub-plot when Croatia and Denmark clash for a place in the World Cup quarter-finals.

Three minutes of added time, Denmark have plenty forward trying to pinch a victor.

Luka Modric and co have lost just two friendlies this calendar year - against Brazil and Peru. "Croatia 2 Denmark 0".

Croatia will next face host Russian Federation in the quarterfinals this weekend in Sochi.

Asked whether his captain could win player-of-the-tournament, as France were knocking out Argentina on Saturday, Dalic said: "It's not going to go to Messi". A lovely through pass to Ante Rebic led to an obvious goal-scoring chance that was ruined by an intentional penalty in the box.

We're back for the second half, will we see as explosive a start as we did in the first?

82' - Croatia's Mateo Kovacic takes a hard fall and immediately grabs his right shoulder.

First, Mathias Jørgensen turned home in the second minute after Croatia failed to clear a long throw-in from Jonas Knudsen, the defender's shot creeping under Subasic to give Denmark the flawless start.

Nicolai Jorgensen (for Cornelius 66) - 5 - Entered the fray in a like-for-like swap with Cornelius, and provided his side with an equally effective outlet up top.

Andreas Christensen - 4 - Played in an unorthodox midfield role, the Chelsea defender struggled to stamp his authority in the middle of the park as Croatia's midfield trident dominated the ball, and he was subsequently subbed off at half-time.

Both sides could have won it in injury-time, when Rakitic and then Braithwaite shot narrowly wide. That was quick, too.

After Sime Vrsaljko smashed a cross into the box, the ball pinballed off the face of Denmark midfielder Thomas Delaney and dropped to the feet of Mandzukic, whose mishit shot trundled past Kasper Schmeichel. We'll be back shortly for the second spell.

Though Croatia are favourites on Sunday, and are some people's surprise pick to win the whole tournament, coach Zlatko Dalic said Denmark's solid team play and strong defence should not be under-estimated. Mathias Jorgensen sneaks one through after some juggling in the box. I am sure they will create some chances, but most of their build-up play is under the "hopeful" category, unless they can get Christian Eriksen on the ball.