Lovren's Croatia through to World Cup last 16 as group winners


"In a tournament setting, when you play intensive games it's imperative to have strength in depth, and today we proved we have it", said man of the match Badelj as Croatia look to at least emulate the squad who finished third in the 1998 World Cup.

Croatia will meet Denmark in the last 16 while Argentina play France.

Croatia had their first clear chance when Milan Badelj's missile crashed onto the bar six minutes into the second half.

Fielding a side filled with reserves, Croatia ended Iceland's first ever Fifa World Cup run with a 2-1 win in Rostov-on-Don.

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A revamped but businesslike Croatia has topped its World Cup Group D as Ivan Perisic's last-gasp goal helped it maintain its flawless record with a 2-1 win that also ended Iceland's qualification hopes.

But Iceland responded with intensity and intent, with a Sverrir Ingason needing touching over, and moments later he too smacked the crossbar.

Milan Badelj of Croatia celebrates after scoring his team's first goal against Iceland. Johann Berg Gudmundsson stole possession before trying to set Alfred Finnbogason away, only to be denied by an interception from Dulje Caleta-Car.

"We want to beat Iceland to stay top of our group".

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In 1982, Hungary beat El Salvador 10-1; in 1974 Yugoslavia beat Congo 9-0 and in 1954, Hungary beat South Korea 9-0 as well. The veteran Honda became the top-scoring Asian player in World Cup history, netting his fourth goal in nine appearances.

They started to press higher, putting Croatia on the back foot.

The match was evenly poised in the final 10 minutes of the first half, but chances were few and far between for both nations. We left everything behind on the pitch, there's no percentage left in the batteries in the dying minutes.

Hallgrimsson cut his teeth in global management as assistant to Swede Lars Lagerback, who steered Iceland to the Euro 2016 finals, where they beat England in the last 16 but fell to host nation France at the quarter-final stage.

The referee pointed straight to the spot with no VAR required and the Everton midfielder soon stepped up to rifle into the roof of the net and draw Iceland level in the 76th minute.

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Iceland and Croatia were in the same qualifying group for the World Cup and landed in the same group at the World Cup.