Gareth Southgate's team dominated the first half, and they had Croatia on the ropes for lengthy periods after Trippier's fifth-minute free kick had given England the lead. "We've won after scoring in the last minute, won after conceding in the last minute, come through extra-time and penalties", he told the BBC.
The Croats" "golden generation' then took a 1-0 lead over hosts France at Paris' Stade de France early in the second half with Suker's fifth goal of the tournament but Lilian Thuram scored twice - his only worldwide goals - to carry the home nation to a comeback victory and a spot in the final.
That they will have that chance is due in part to their fitness, attitude and finishing quality but also to England's failure to take full advantage of a totally dominant first half.
But then Stuart Pearce had his penalty saved by Bodo Illgner before Olaf Thon converted Germany's fourth to give them the edge.
England manager Gareth Southgate has spoken of how penalty shoot-outs can be emotionally draining, but Croatia striker Mario Mandzukic does not not feel the team will be exhausted.
Southgate stuck with the same starting line-up as that which eased past Sweden in the quarter-finals, while Inter Milan's Marcelo Brozovic replaced Andrej Kramaric in the Croatian line-up.
"We've got to keep getting over those hurdles and I know we talked about the success of the younger teams but this is a much harder, much bigger level for the players and the belief is building as things are happening". German Andreas Brehme put the 1982 and 1986 World Cup finalists ahead with a deflected shot off Paul Parker.
England's soccer team has the support of Prince William and Prince Harry, even though neither of the royals plans to be present at the World Cup semi-final match in Moscow on Wednesday.
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England has gone with a 3-5-2, and the only change was to start Ruben Loftus-Cheek in midfield after Dele Alli injured a thigh.
While they will be at opposite ends of the pitch, Subasic and Pickford are set to play equally decisive roles as goalkeepers of their respective teams, especially if the match goes to a penalty shootout.
England play Croatia in Moscow on Wednesday night with a place in only their second major tournament final on the line.
England paid the price for those early misses when Perisic showed great determination to get in front of Kyle Walker to meet a curling Sime Vrsaljko cross and though his boot was arguably high, Walker was stooping and there were few complaints. "It's just unbelievable to get back in the game in this way".
The nation was gripped by World Cup fever from the start, and this was England's first semi-final since 1996.
England initially regrouped well in extra time with Marcus Rashford introducing some pace and Croatia were grateful for Vrsaljko's goalline clearance of a John Stones header.
It was a wonder the Juventus forward did not break a limb as Pickford crunched into him. Shortly after, Perisic scooped the ball over the bar with Pickford out of position. They brought two Israeli cancer patients with them, 18-year-old Mika Lipsker and 13-year-old Alon Izraev.