Midfielder Mateo Kovacic was interviewed by FIFA+ about his team’s progress thus far, their strategy against Brazil, and the motivational atmosphere at home.

The runners-up from 2018 are aiming for another FIFA World CupTM Final. Croatia is dreaming for the second time in a row after a strong showing in the group stages. And a victory on penalties in the Round of 16.

Question# You tie Brazil thanks to your historic victory over Japan. Is this the cherry on top?
Mateo Kovacic: Let’s actually hope there will be further icing on the cake.

Yes, this will be a massive game, as is typical for a World Cup quarterfinal. The opposition plays excellent football and is formidable. We hope to advance to the semifinals and show that we can play excellent football as well.

Question# You already faced challenging competition in a challenging group stage. Belgium and Japan have been left behind. These games required a lot of strategies; are you about to play a team that enjoys exciting football?
In my opinion, there are no simple opponents in the World Cup. No matter who you play against, it will always be difficult. However, with the fantastic teams from Morocco, Belgium, Canada, and Japan, we had an amazing experience. Japan had a fantastic competition and a wonderful game.

All of those teams are outstanding, and the team we will now be facing is also exceptional. We’ll aim to play against them at a high level and be ready. It’s difficult to say right now. We have time to examine them and weigh their advantages and disadvantages. Now is the time to concentrate on us. We must act collectively and forcefully.

Our group has talent. We’ll launch an attack and make our way through.