Russia, who knocked out the 2010 World Cup winners Spain from this summer's tournament in the Round of 16, will face Croatia in Sochi later today with the kick-off set for 4am Sunday (AEST)

“I think teams’ chances are equal. The possibility of a draw after normal time and extra time and the [outcome of the match] being determined by a penalty shootout is real and quite high. Croatia are a dangerous side who know how to finish, but our advantage is that we are playing at home, and this is very important,” Gadzhiyev said.

He added that sometimes “potentially stronger opponents” could lose because of the way “small things come together” and the outcome would depend on “various details” and “certain conditions during the game.”

The 2018 FIFA World Cup kicked off on June 14 and will continue until July 15, with the final set to be played at Moscow's Luzhniki Stadium.