Iceland’s World Cup dream was ended by Ivan Perisic’s late victor in a 2-1 defeat to Croatia, who themselves topped Group D.
Just moments later, Badelj gave Croatia the advantage after rifling in a half-volley.
Dejan Lovren’s handball followed by Gylfi Sigurdsson penalty marked Iceland’s team come back with the equalizer cancelling Milan Badelj opener.
Subs: Bradaric (6), Lovren (4), Rakitic (na). The chance seemed to bring a new found confidence out of Iceland as the chances began to flow.
Subs: Sigurdarson (6), Gudmundsson (na), Traustason (na).
As it stands, they are going to the Round of 16 with confirmed Group D winners Croatia; Nigeria and Iceland are out.
Unlike in their first two matches against Argentina and Nigeria where they were more solid at the back, it was Iceland who were on the front foot and had the best of the chances against the Croats. Kari Arnason also missed out for Sverrir Ingason, and Emil Hallfredsson takes Jon Bodvarsson.
But their attacks became less frequent as Croatia took more control and Ivan Perisic – one of only two players to retain his place from the win over Argentina – fired home in injury time.
The Iceland defender Sverrir Ingason almost scored twice just moments later, heading just over and then again off the crossbar.
Ultimately, the combination of circumstances necessary to propel them forward did not transpire, but only just. Iceland vs Croatia, 2018 FIFA World Cup Group D Match Preview: Start Time, Probable Lineup and Match Prediction.
A solid effort from Croatia’s nine changes, Iceland played well and tried their hearts out.
Croatia’s Ivan Perisic celebrates scoring their second goal with Josip Pivaric and Milan Badelj.
Croatia continued to impress at the 2018 World Cup in Russian Federation.
In the 30th minute, Gylfi Sigurdsson’s free-kick from 25 yards out looked to worry Croatia stopper Lovre Kalinic, but he was able to make the save. One of the beauties of the handsome game is the number of different ways it can be played.
46′ Second half gets underway with Croatia taking the kick.
Hallgrimsson, a practicing dentist and long-time trainer of boys’ and girls’ teams at community sports clubs in Iceland, said morale in the team remains high since the Icelanders have already made history.
The match was evenly poised in the final 10 minutes of the first half, but chances were few and far between for both nations.