Who is Dominik Livakovic? Croatia's World Cup goalkeeper who played a blinder against Brazil in the quarter-finals
- Livakovic was incredible against Brazil
- Made 11 saves in 120 minutes
- Even saved a penalty as Brazil went through
WHAT'S HAPPENING? Despite the presence of famous stars like Neymar, Vinicius Junior, Luka Modric and Ivan Perisic on the field, it was the 27-year-old shot stopper who stood out. The Dinamo Zagreb 'keeper denied Neymar four times, Lucas Paqueta twice and Vinicius and Antony once each to keep his side level in 90 minutes.
He stayed strong in extra-time, too, but, there was only so long that he and his team could hold out for, as he was rounded by Neymar as Brazil took the lead at the end of the first half of extra time. Croatia struck back in the second period though, and Livakovic stayed strong to keep Croatia in it and take the game to penalties. Across the 120 minutes, he made an incredible 11 saves, while Brazil goalkeeper Alisson made none.
But the heroics continued into the penalty shootout, as he saved Brazil's first attempt to preserve Croatia's lead and they went on to win as Marquinhos hit the post with the last spot kick.
WHO IS LIVAKOVIC: He came through the NK Zagreb youth academy and made a name for himself in his four years in the first team. He was soon snapped up by Croatian giants Dinamo Zagreb in 2015 and initially loaned back to their city neighbours but came back in 2016 to take over as first choice goalkeeper. In January the next year, he made his senior debut with Croatia, but it was not until 2019 he became a regular for the national team. He has now made 262 appearances for Dinamo and 39 for Croatia.
AND WHAT'S MORE: The match against Brazil is not even the first in which he has stood out at the World Cup. He was the saviour for Croatia as they beat Japan on penalties, making three saves in the shootout - becoming just the third to ever do so at the World Cup.
STORY IN THREE PHOTOS:
DID YOU KNOW? He made more saves against Brazil than any Croatia goalkeeper has ever made in a World Cup match, making eight in the first 90 minutes of the quarter-final game.
THE BIGGER PICTURE: Livakovic will surely go down as one of the stars of this World Cup for his sturdy and decisive displays for Croatia.
WHAT NEXT FOR LIVAKOVIC? After Croatia's penalty shootout win, they go through to the semi-finals of the World Cup. They will take on either Netherlands or Argentina in the next match and will feel they are in safe hands with Livakovic in goal.