- Croatia are to play France in the final of Russia 2018 which is a repeat of a semi final from France 98
- Ivan Perisic hopes that the defeat of 20 years ago can serve as motivation for he and his teammates
Exactly 20 years ago, Croatia got to the semi final of the 1998 World Cup in France. Four more World Cup appearances on, the small nation is at the final of Russia.
At France 98, Croatia were stopped at the semi final by the host nation. This time they have gone a step further, even beating a host nation on the way. And so winger Ivan Perisic believes their final game against France would be different this time.
Croatia are looking to use the defeat in the 1998 World Cup semi-finals to France as motivation in Sunday's final, says Ivan Perisic.
Croatia got through to the final thanks to a goal each from Perisic and Mandzukic against. They had gone down after five minutes thanks to a sublime free-kick by Kieran Trippier.
For many, Croatia will be the underdogs, but as reported by Goal, Perisic told FIFA.com: "France stopped us in the semi-finals in 1998. We will have some extra motivation because of that, for sure.
"They are favourites, but we will do our best to surprise them. We have three days to prepare ourselves. Our dream is so close now."
Croatia have been involved in 3 consecutive extra time sessions in their previous games. It is something that France will not miss in their planning for the game.
ATTENTION: Join our Facebook group Ghana Football Fan Zone
But on their way to the final, Croatia have beaten star-studded Argentina, a resolute Denmark and a stubborn Russia. Sunday is far from a done deal for France.
FIFA 2018 Most Powerful Teams: Football Team Ranking For The FIFA World Cup:
Your stories and photos are always welcome. Get interactive via our Facebook page.