PICS: Photographer becomes part of Croatia SWC goal celebration
Moscow - When Croatia scored the goal that put them into the 2018 Soccer World Cup final on Wednesday, a photographer unwittingly became part of the celebrations after he was buried under a pile of joyous players.
After Mario Mandzukic scored in extra-time to give Croatia a 2-1 victory against England in their semi-final, he ran to a corner of the pitch at Moscow's Luzhniki Stadium to share his joy with his team-mates.
"I was just changing my lens as the players ran towards me," said photographer Yuri Cortez, who was positioned next to the pitch side advertising boards.
"They just kept coming towards me and they fell on me! It was a crazy moment, they were delighted. Then they suddenly realised that I was underneath them," said Mexico City-based Cortez.
Quick as a flash, he picked up his camera and took some remarkable close-up shots of the Croats' joy.
"Then they asked me if I was OK. Another one picked up my lens and another player (Domagoj Vida) gave me a kiss."
Croatia, who have reached the final for the first time in their history, will play France on Sunday.
Kick-off is at 17:00 SA time.