In the 31st minute of the first half, Russian star Denis Cheryshev scored a belter to provide the first lead against Croatian side.
Modric said: 'Our style was cramped a bit and maybe we did not want to risk with passes, so we had to balance it out in the second half.
The overachieving hosts, the lowest ranked nation in the tournament, were trying to make it to the World Cup semifinals for the first time since the Soviet Union team finished fourth at the 1966 tournament in England. Igor Akinfeev was more than once called into action in the opening moments and each time displayed his class that was so apparent versus Spain to keep Ante Rebic's effort out. But Croatia made it 1-1 just eight minutes later thanks to a headed goal from striker Andrej Kramaric.
Brazilian-born Mario Fernandes had kept Russia's dream alive when he headed home in the 115th minute to level the scores and force penalties, but he and Fedor Smolov both failed to convert their spot-kicks in Sochi.
Russia's unexpectedly extended home World Cup finals finally came to an end deep into the Sochi night, via the agony of a penalty shoot-out. "We all understood that Spain will control the ball, it happens in every match they play with any team", Russian Federation midfielder Aleksandr Golovin said.
Having knocked out Spain on penalties in the previous round, Russia, 70th in the Federation Internationale de Football Association rankings, again defied the odds to take 20th ranked Croatia to a shootout with a 2-2 draw after extra time but on this occasion their marksmanship deserted them.
"We have two matches to play, we are very motivated, we will give our all".
Rare chances for Stanislav Cherchesov's team saw Dzyuba head tamely at Danijel Subasic from a 62nd-minute corner, before substitute Aleksandr Erokhin sent his header well over the bar from Fernandes' cross on the right 10 minutes later.
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Despite impressing in Mexico, he is considering offers from Europe as well as a return to Japan . "Last but not least, I am also a supporter of the national team".
England defied nearly three decades of disappointment to move confidently into the World Cup semi-finals for the first time since 1990 as headers from Harry Maguire and Dele Alli downed a dogged but toothless Sweden 2-0.
"We had to withstand a lot of physical pressure", Southgate said.
Croatia advance to their first World Cup semifinal since 1998, against England in Moscow on Wednesday.
Argentina in 1990 had been the last team to win consecutive World Cup shootouts.
"I know the fans here are enjoying it", Kane said.
'After we went 2-1 ahead, we should have maintained our focus, but there was a lapse of concentration. At 22, Alli became the second-youngest scorer for England at a World Cup behind Michael Owen. "We were lucky. I was concentrating throughout the match, but after that penalty it came bursting out of me".
Although Sweden rallied in the final 30 minutes, forcing two good saves from goalkeeper Jordan Pickford, England comfortably held on for its first shutout of the tournament.