Croatia defied all odds to beat Brazil on penalties and reach a second consecutive World Cup semi-final despite Neymar equaling Pele’s record of 77 international goals.
Neymar’s 106th-minute strike appeared to have tied either Argentina or the Netherlands, only for Bruno Petkovic to equalize in the 177th minute.
And Croatia then stunned their South American opponents to win 4-2 on penalties.
Rodrygo and Marquinhos missed from 12 yards as the pre-tournament favorites crashed out in the quarter-finals.
Few would have expected Brazil to exit after Neymar gave his side a deserved lead.
Speaking on talkSPORT’s commentary, Dean Ashton said: “Oh that’s just sensational from Neymar, it’s almost like he pre-wrote it.
“Croatia didn’t know what to do. He goes past the goalkeeper and into the back of the net, that’s absolutely exceptional from Neymar.
Ashton added: “The bench flew out of the blocks to celebrate, and so they should, it’s an absolutely brilliant goal from Neymar.
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“He was created entirely by himself, the speed and composure to get around the keeper and finish him off – that’s brilliant. It’s his moment!”
But reeling from Neymar and his fellow Brazilians, Croatia equalized in the 117th minute thanks to Petkovic’s deflected strike.
Ashton raged in Brazil: “They extinguished Brazil, totally extinguished. How can you be four against four against a team looking to score deep in added time?
“That’s not good enough!” It takes a bad deflection, but does Croatia care? Certainly not! They are the masters, Croatia, they are the masters of comebacks in major competitions!
“It was ridiculous from Brazil, so naive! It’s just not good enough at this level!
And Brazil crumbled in the shootout, as their curse against European sides in the knockout stage continues.
They have not managed to beat a European nation in the round of 16 since winning the World Cup in 2002.
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