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Croatia pairs France in 2018 FIFA World Cup final after 2-1 win over England

July 12, 0:02 UTC+3 MOSCOW

The winning goal in the 109-minute was scored by Croatian striker Mario Mandzukic

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© Stanislav Krasilnikov/TASS

MOSCOW, July 11. /TASS/. Team Croatia paired France in the final match for the 2018 FIFA World Cup with a 2-1 win over England in the overtime period of the semifinals match at the Luzhniki Stadium in the Russian capital of Moscow on Wednesday.

The Croatian national anthem was the first to be played before the match at the almost full-house 80,000-seat Luzhniki Area kicked off. The audience at the match between England and Croatia totaled 78,011 spectators.

Both teams went on strong offensives testing each other from the onset of the match, but it was England to open the score by England’s defender Kieran Trippier going just six minutes into the game.

Although the statistics registered the 58% of the ball possession in favor of Croatia against England’s 42%, the first half ended with 1-0 flashing on the scoreboard.

The Croatian squad tied the score late into the second half after its striker Ivan Perisic put the ball into the net of the opponents. His goal sent the game into the overtime period with 1-1 draw.

The opening 15-minute stretch of the overtime ended with the draw of 1-1 as well, but it was Croatia to up the score to 2-1 in the next 15-minute period of the overtime after forward Mario Mandzukic netted the ball.

The Croatian team is now set to face off the French squad in the final match of the football championship in Russia at the Luzhniki Stadium on July 15 at 6:00 p.m. local time (15:00 GMT).

The French national football team defeated Belgium 1-0 in the semifinal match of the 2018 FIFA World Cup, played on Tuesday night in Russia’s Saint Petersburg, to become the first team to vie for the much-coveted FIFA World Cup Trophy this year.

The match for the bronze of the 2018 FIFA World Cup will be played in St. Petersburg on July 14 between the national football teams of Belgium and England. The game kicks off at 5:00 p.m. local time (14:00 GMT).

Russia is staging its first-ever FIFA World Cup, which kicked off in Moscow with a remarkable opening show at Luzhniki Stadium on the evening of June 14.

The country selected 11 host cities to be the venues for the matches of the 2018 World Cup and they are Moscow, St. Petersburg, Sochi, Kazan, Saransk, Kaliningrad, Volgograd, Rostov-on-Don, Nizhny Novgorod, Yekaterinburg and Samara.

The national football team of hosts Russia managed to make it to the quarterfinals stage of this world championship, where Croatia edged them out in a 4-2 penalty shootout on July 7 at the Fisht Arena in Sochi.

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