Russia coach Stanislav Cherchesov spoke highly of his team despite the penalty shootout loss to Croatia in the World Cup quarter-finals here on Saturday.

“We trusted ourselves. We could only prove our worth by working hard,” Cherchesov said at the post-match press conference.

“I believe that people did not only start trusting us but they are in love with us. The entire country of Russia is in love with us,” he added.

Hosts Russia made history as they advanced to the top eight for the first time.

“People know what the Russian national team is worth. We hope we have turned the situation for the better,” the coach noted.

In this World Cup, Russia crushed Saudi Arabia 5-0 in the opener, beat Egypt 3-1, before losing 0-3 to Uruguay to finish second in Group A. They upset Spain on penalties in the round of 16.