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Perisic hails 'dream' goal as Croatia reach final

AFP  |  Moscow 

said his equaliser that helped come from behind to beat England 2-1 after extra time and reach final was a goal that "he could only dream of" as a child.

The poked home a cross from to haul level midway through the second half having fallen behind to an early free-kick.

completed the turnaround around with the winner on 109 minutes to send his country through to Sunday's final against

"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 showed our character just as in the previous two knockout games when we were a goal down. We didn't used to be that resilient."

With a population of just over four million, are the smallest nation to reach the final match of a since lifted the title in 1950.

"I would like to thank everyone who came to support us in and everyone back home in Croatia who are sending their incredible support to us."

The 29-year-old Perisic recalled watching Croatia's last semi-final appearance in 1998, a game won 2-1 by eventual champions

"I was back in my hometown. I rooted for Croatia wearing the Croatian jersey," said Perisic, who came through the youth teams in with Sochaux.

"I could only dream to play for my country and to score one of the most important goals.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, July 12 2018. 09:30 IST