Croatia defender, Vida, escapes ban over pro-Ukraine celebration

Marcus Newton
July 9, 2018

In the video, which was then posted to Facebook by Ukrainian journalist Andrey Shakhov, Vukojević can be heard saying, "This is a victory for Ukraine and Dynamo", before Vida added, "Glory to Ukraine", a slogan used by Ukrainian anti-Russian nationalists.

While Croatia's Marcelo Brozovic, Luka Modric, Domagoj Vida and Ivan Rakitic were on target in the tiebreaker, Mateo Kovacic failed to convert.

Ivan Rakitic and Danijel Subasic celebrate winning the penalty shootout.

Croatia's shootout victory over Russian Federation was their second straight win on penalties at the World Cup, having beaten Denmark in the same fashion in the last-16, and Dalic admitted that playing 120 minutes twice in the last six days was not ideal, particularly as some of his players are now carrying injuries.

In the video, Vida shouts out "glory to Ukraine" alongside former Croatia global Ognjen Vukojevic. - There were three headed goals in this match - the most in a World Cup match since Germany 8-0 Saudi Arabia in 2002 (five).

This could cost him a spot in the World Cup semi-final.

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Vida and Vukojevic played together at Ukrainian club Dynamo Kiev.

Vida told the Russian newspaper Sport Express he meant the video to be a personal message. Vida had nearly sealed it for Croatia with his 101st-minute header, but the Russia's hopes were kept alive by Brazilian Fernandes, who unleashed a wonderful header off Alan Dzagoev's free-kick minutes before start of the shoot-out, making it 2-2.

After ending the home side's incredible run, Zlatko Dalic's side will aim to at least go one better than the famous 1998 vintage, who finished third in France, when they meet England at the Luzhniki Stadium on Wednesday.

Perhaps while still in Russia, Vida and his teammates should visit the many monuments to the Red Army's historic victory over fascism in order to educate themselves about the struggles that Russian and all Soviet people went through during a time when Croatia itself operated as a puppet state of the Hitler regime before being liberated by Tito's Soviet allied partisans.

It wasn't immediately clear whether Vida and Vukojevic intended the video to be made public, or if it was later uploaded to YouTube by someone else. "Please be patient while we collect all of the information", said Federation Internationale de Football Association earlier today.

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