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World Cup 2018: Lensman caught in Croatia victory pile

World Cup 2018: Lensman caught in Croatia victory pile

Yuri Cortez ended up trapped under the celebrating Croatian players after they beat England
No photographer got closer to Croatia's World Cup semi-final victory than AFP's Yuri Cortez who found himself right under the pile of jubilant players. He happened to be working in the corner of the pitch in Moscow where Mario Mandzukic rushed to celebrate after scoring against England in extra time.Teammates piled in after the man behind the winning goal and Cortez disappeared beneath the team. "They just kept coming towards me and they fell on me!" he says.Ever the professional, he picked up his camera and snapped the finalists close up, while colleagues in turn photographed the Salvadorean inside the pile.Croatia beat England 2-1 on Wednesday to reach the World Cup final for the first time in their history."I was just changing my lens as the players ran towards me," the photographer told AFP news agency later.
World Cup 2018: Lensman caught in Croatia victory pile

The Croatian players, including defender Josip Pivaric, were overjoyed with Mandzukic's goal
World Cup 2018: Lensman caught in Croatia victory pile

Yuri Cortez took this candid photo of goal scorer Mario Mandzukic enjoying the celebrations
World Cup 2018: Lensman caught in Croatia victory pile

Mandzukic scored the goal
"They were delighted. Then they suddenly realised that I was underneath them."The [players] asked me if I was OK. One picked up my lens and another player (Domagoj Vida) gave me a kiss."
World Cup 2018: Lensman caught in Croatia victory pile

Man-of-the-moment Mario Mandzukic offered assistance to Cortez after the goal
World Cup 2018: Lensman caught in Croatia victory pile

The winning players helped the photographer to his feet
World Cup 2018: Lensman caught in Croatia victory pile

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World Cup 2018: Lensman caught in Croatia victory pile

World Cup 2018: Lensman caught in Croatia victory pile

The players made sure Cortez was okay
World Cup 2018: Lensman caught in Croatia victory pile

Cortez was happy to be caught in the revelry after the goal
All photos subject to copyright.
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