Rakitic and Iniesta won three La Liga titles, four Copa del Rey trophies and a Champions League together between 2015 and 2018, and the Croatian said he was stunned that Fernando Hierro overlooked the World Cup victor as Spain went up against Russian Federation in the round of 16.
This was the first time since 1994 that a team tied a match after going behind in extra-time.
It was going to be either hosts Russian Federation or Croatia, who topped their group ahead of Argentina after demolishing Lionel Messi's side in the first round.
Fernandes was on target in the 115th minute to bring the scoreline back to 2-2, and unbelievable footage has since emerged of his family and friends gathered around a big screen to see the scenes unfold.
The pressure will be even greater Wednesday when they meet England with a World Cup final berth on the line.
Following some superb attacking displays, comparisons with the 1998 team that midfielder Ivan Rakitic - who was born in Switzerland to parents who originally hailed from Croatia - remembers so well were inevitably made.
Dalic also explained why he had been overcome with emotion after Ivan Rakitic sent Croatia through.
But Croatia was back on level terms eight minutes later through a strike by Andrej Kramaric. "We gave everything we could". There was not a single national team in the World Cup that had the complete trust of their country.
In a related incident, Federation Internationale de Football Association also issued a warning to Croatia goalkeeper, Danijel Subasic, who lifted his jersey to reveal a T-shirt commemorating a teammate who had died from game-related injuries in 2008.
"This is a attractive feeling, we are overwhelmed, This win was for the whole of Croatia and Croats around the world".
"It wasn't a lovely game, but it was a battle", Dalic said.
Cheryshev was Russia's leading scorer at the World Cup with four goals.
Many fans gave him a standing ovation when he was taken off in the second half.