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But there were reasons to be cheerful in Saint Petersburg on Friday morning as all 23 players trained ahead of Saturday's match.

"If I was in charge of the FA there would be no doubt that I would keep Gareth Southgate and Steve Holland in their jobs and give them the chance to take the team to the next Euros and the next World Cup".

England are out of the World Cup and Roy Keane is reminding everyone when they should be happy.

Rarely has Hansen's sentiment been highlighted more than during the first half of England's World Cup semi-final when Raheem Sterling ran Croatia absolutely ragged. But Ivan Perisic equalized in the 68th after getting his foot to ball before England defender Kyle Walker could head it away. Especially as referee Cuneyt Cakir once sent off Manchester United's Nani for the same offence. It's a different game if that goes in (VAR would have shown Kane was onside).

However, captain Luka Modric accused English journalists and pundits of lack of respect and admitted his teammates used their negative criticism to motivate them to victory. England were the better side for the entire first-half and the opening spell of the second period.

Ivan Perisic's goal destabilized England's set-up.

"This has got to be the start of something rather than the end of it". The margins were fine but Croatia deservedly prevailed.

"We all feel the pain of the defeat".

One game behind closed doors has already been played against Bulgaria but the clash with England will be their next competitive home game played under UEFA's watch and the ban will therefore carry over.

The disillusion was easy to understand.

In hindsight, Southgate might have kept Sterling on the pitch as England's attacking threat was virtually reduced to nothing without him. The problem? England has been decent but their weakness has been an inability to score goals from open play as well as create genuine goal scoring opportunities aside their set-piece threats.

"Croatia's experience really told in the end".

Croatia is trolling the England national soccer team after dumping it out of the 2018 FIFA World Cup in heartbreaking fashion. Young men like goalkeeper Jordan Pickford, John Stones, Harry Maguire and Kieran Trippier have put their names up in lights, while Kane - without being at his best - will likely win the Golden Boot.

Pre-tournament preparation was spot on: "We chose to play friendlies against teams who would be at the World Cup and that was a great lesson for us".

England are no longer a laughing stock.


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