Leaving everyone in shock, England rushed out of the semifinals and Croatia defeated England 2-1 on Wednesday to advance to the World Cup final for the first time in the country's history.
Croatia with a population of just a few million is the smallest nation to reach the final since Uruguay, the winners of the 1950 tournament.
Gareth Southgate who is the coach of England had spoken of his young side "breaking down barriers" in Russia after their biggest World Cup win and first penalty shootout triumph, but it was Croatia who forced their way into a relatively closed shop as just the 13th different country to progress to the final in 88 years.
The champions of 2010, Spain were the last first-time finalists in what is now the 21st edition of the competition. It is an achievement all the more remarkable for a country with a population of little more than four million. Only Uruguay -- who lifted the inaugural title in 1930, and again in 1950 -- has a smaller population among all World Cup finalists.
Croatia, who were beaten in extra-time by Portugal at Euro 2016, became just the second team to go to extra-time in three consecutive World Cup games. However unlike England at the 1990 tournament, it was again third-time lucky thanks to Mario Mandzukic's 109th-minute goal. The Final Match will be played on 15th July between France and Croatia. Well, it will be a heart in mouth situation to see how will hold the FIFA World Cup trophy this year.