CROATIA'S 1998 bronze medallists are regarded as the country's golden generation, but Luka Modric's class of 2018 has the potential to surpass them.
Croatia's adjustment from their win against Denmark, also on penalties, was former Leicester striker Kramaric replacing Marcelo Brozovic.
After a decent start, Croatia began only to keep the ball in the middle while trying to slow down the game. Cheryshev still had plenty to do when he collected the ball on the left and after playing a neat one-two with Artem Dzyuba, the winger curled a shot into the top-left corner of the net from 22 yards out.
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Or if they can't get past the home team, they will be the latest Croatia team to fall short.
In the shootout, Smolov's feeble shot was saved by Subasic and Fernandes hit wide.
Russian Federation had fought their way through Group A as runners-up and then beat Spain in a penalty shoot-out before their journey came to an end against Croatia in Sochi.
Domagoj Vida directed a header through traffic in the 101st minute to put Croatia ahead, but though Fernandes delivered an answer five minutes from time to force the shootout, his miss from the spot ended Russia's hopes.
Later, Madzukic and Aleksandr Yerokhin had their chances with headers from close range as the two teams seemed to lack creativity and went after aerial movements. Both sides went all the way to penalties in the round of sixteen and will be looking to get the job done in 90 minutes to avoid fatigue.
They will have to attack Modric earlier than they managed to do against Spain's playmakers and will probably play a far more expansive game than last Sunday. It became 1-1 when Alan Dzagoev scored and Mateo Kovacic flopped. Croatia's shooters did enough that Ivan Rakitic's successful penalty was the victor and set off another wild celebration with Subasic on the bottom of the pile.
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