Right before the end of the game, a young man in a red and white Croatia football shirt rushed up to me at the fan zone in central Zagreb.
“If we win, I’m going to jump into that fountain,” he said.
Seconds later, as huge victory cheers filled the square, he plunged in, followed by dozens of others, shouting and splashing with joy.
People set off fireworks and flares.
“England is going home – and we are going to the final!” shouted a girl with red and white checks painted on her face. “We are such a small country, but we can play football!”
“Nobody expected us to win,” Marko cried. “The English media all week were making fun of us, saying that we don’t have a chance, but it showed in the field that quality reigned supreme.
“In every single game, they play with 100% of their hearts. It’s everything to us.”
This is Croatia’s moment. It’s a country of just over 4 million people, that has produced a team of brilliant players.
“Croatians are very proud. The last time we got to the semi-finals in a World Cup was in 1998, just after the war and independence. We show we can win. It’s more important for a small country.”