Dejan Lovren demands respect after matching Thierry Henry feat

Harry Kane Dejan Lovren

He was also integral to Liverpool's run to the Champions League final in May, but although Klopp was full of praise for the 29-year-old he also said there is still room for improvement.

Croatia lost to hosts France in the semi-finals 20 years ago in their first World Cup as an independent nation, going on to beat the Netherlands in the third-place play-off.

He added: "Modric is the best middle three player in the world and if we win this World Cup, he deserves the Ballon d'Or".

Goalkeeper Danijel Subasic, right-back Sime Vrsaljko and Liverpool centre-back Dejan Lovren all missed the session at the Luzhniki Stadium training complex.

"I heard people saying I had a hard season but I don't agree with that", the 29-year-old told BeIN SPORTS.

"I took Liverpool to the final of the Champions League and now with my national team we are in the final".

"But I like to challenge these strikers and to show to everyone that I'm one of the best defenders".

"People are crying, they are happy in our country - this is something historical for us", Lovren said.

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"It was quite tough first half, we couldn't control the ball and they had good chances" he admitted.

"It's something we'll never forget".

"It's something, for me, special".

"[In Croatia] we went through a lot of s***, war, all these things and even now the situation is not the best".

Croatia played extra-time for the third successive knockout match, having previously beaten Denmark and hosts Russian Federation on penalties. "After everything that's been said before the game, we showed our character and that we deserve to be in the final".

Lovren and his Croatia team-mate held off England in Moscow on Wednesday, winning 2-1 in extra-time to book a date with France.

Last night he exorcised those ghosts, helping to shut Harry Kane down as Croatia reached the World Cup final.

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