Ivan Perisic said scoring to send Croatia into their first ever World Cup Final was a childhood dream come true. “We’ve shown our character.”

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The Inter winger was named FIFA Man of the Match after a goal and an assist for Juventus striker Mario Mandzukic in extra time, as they fought back from a Kieran Trippier free kick to beat England 2-1 in extra time.

Ivan Perisic said scoring to send Croatia into their first ever World Cup Final was a childhood dream come true. “We’ve shown our character.”

The Inter winger was named FIFA Man of the Match after a goal and an assist for Juventus striker Mario Mandzukic in extra time, as they fought back from a Kieran Trippier free kick to beat England 2-1 in extra time.

“It was a very difficult game, we all know what was at stake and how important a semi-final is for a small country like Croatia,” said Perisic.

“We started slowly but we’ve shown our character, just as we have in the previous two knockout rounds when we were one goal down in both matches. We didn’t used to be that resilient.”

This was only Croatia’s second ever World Cup semi-final after defeat in 1998 to France and it is France they will face on Sunday in Moscow.

"I was back in Omis, my home town, 20 years ago. I rooted for Croatia, wearing a Croatia jersey, and I could only dream of playing for my country and scoring one of the most important goals to send us to a final."

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