England hold their heads high despite pain of World Cup loss

England hold their heads high despite pain of World Cup loss

Bitter disappointment was mixed with pride for England fans who witnessed the Three Lions' lose their first World Cup semi-final in decades.

But a second-half goal from Ivan Perisic and an extra-time victor from Mario Mandzukic ended England's dream of reaching the final and winning a second World Cup for their country. We can at least defend two crosses.

"We had hoped [for this] and we believed in our team, but the feeling when we finally entered the finals can not be compared to anything", said Croatia fan Ivan Kecerin.

The Inter Milan winger poked home a cross from Sime Vrsaljko to haul Croatia level midway through the second half having fallen behind to an early Kieran Trippier free-kick.

France's forward Kylian Mbappe runs with the ball during the Russian Federation 2018 World Cup semifinal football match between France and Belgium at the Saint Petersburg Stadium in Saint Petersburg on July 10, 2018.

"This was the dream, we could've made it, we could have done it".

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Just making the semi-final was more than anybody expected and pubs across the county were packed last night to cheer on Gareth Southgate's young side. Did we feel we would be in this position?

He said: "Well, I think I've said this before, but I was not a renowned fashion icon throughout my playing career, so it's rather unusual to feel that way now".

"This will hurt for a while but we can hold our heads up, it's been a fantastic journey but we've got to learn from it and take what we can".


"It's very hard because as we reflect over the next few days there will be a lot more positive but tonight it's so hard for everybody to take, we're so close to what was nearly unimaginable at the start".

"The team haven't really played much together either".

"It's hard to put that into context now, and a bit too soon". I'd be amazed if he doesn't come out and something emerges about his fitness. There are a lot of things that have been hugely positive for us.

"We've proved to ourselves that is possible and we've proved to our country that is possible".

It's the ninth goal England has scored from a free kick, corner, or penalty thus far in the tournament, more than any other team in the field.

'No issues before the game, ' Southgate said of Kane.

As the ball slowly petered over the line to the delight of those in red and white chequer, English fans could be heard in the background singing along with the stadium's PA system to Oasis' Don't Look Back In Anger - presumably on reflection of a campaign which has exceeded all expectation.

Southgate's team of 23 has been revolutionary in the sense, that unlike the gold superstars of the past, this team is tied on a bond of brotherhood and the spectacle which they have presented in Russian Federation will make it easier for the next generation to follow them.

But Croatia came out for the second-half on top of the Three Lions, and equalised with a goal from the outstanding Ivan Perisic. "This has been an incredible #WorldCup run and we've enjoyed every minute". He's captained the team brilliantly throughout this tournament.

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