AFP photographer becomes part of Croatia World Cup goal celebration

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AFP photographer becomes part of Croatia World Cup goal celebration

Federation Internationale de Football Association is letting a top Croatian soccer official watch the team's World Cup semifinal against England from a VIP section on Wednesday despite him being convicted last month in a corruption case linked to the transfer of Luka Modric.

Croatia could have defender Sime Vrsaljko back in the thick of things when they take on England in their 2018 World Cup semi-final tie on Wednesday night.

Croatian Cultural Society spokesman Goran Katich watched the game with fellow supporters at the Croatian club in west Auckland and said they were ecstatic when the final whistle went.

Croatia now have the chance to take revenge on France after losing 2-1 in Paris when the sides met in the semi-finals back in 1998 - Dalic travelled to that World Cup as a fan.

Some soccer fans in Winnipeg were left in tears on Wednesday - tears of joy for fans of Croatia's team, while England fans wept for a missed opportunity to see their team in the World Cup final. But we aren't going to make excuses.

However, despite Croatia's Manager admitting his side were exhausted after going to penalties two games in a row, Zlatko Dalic said "there will be no excuses". I can imagine the same kind of scenes, a very great and positive atmosphere back in England.

From 2009 he spent two years each at Belgium's Club Brugge and German sides Borussia Dortmund and Wolfsburg, becoming the Belgian league's top scorer as well as Bundesliga champion and German cup victor.

Kylian Mbappe said he never imagined - "not even in my wildest dreams" - that he could help France reach the World Cup final after Les Bleus saw off Belgium 1-0 on Tuesday. Rakitic added a late third as Croatia secured their place in the last 16. He will just be hoping that all of them are fit enough for one last effort against a fearsome French side.

"France were in the final of the Euros - nearly they are used to being in these sort of big games, and I thought we coped with that side really well, so I don't want any of my players to be frustrated, disappointed". "I think we can do that successfully", Southgate state.

"Finals have to be won because we have still not got over the one we lost two years ago", said Deschamps. "They are young but they have character, a (winning) mentality". "We want to play our best game".

Vukojevic, a former Croatia global, published the video on social media after the match on Saturday in a move which was criticised by Russian politicians.

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