Ivan Rakitic stepped up, 12 yards away from writing the final lines of this incredible drama. The Croatian fans looked weary, almost expecting another twist in a penalty shootout with more twists and turns than a racing track. Calmly slotting it away, Rakitic redeemed Luka Modric, his country’s finest player.
Group D favourites Croatia kicked off their World Cup 2018 campaign in delightful fashion as they registered a compelling 2:0 victory against Nigeria. A first-half own goal from Oghenekaro Etebo gave Hrvatska a lead but Luka Modrić's second-half penalty made sure that the European giants secure all three points against