It's England's biggest game for 28 years... but will they do it?

It's England's biggest game for 28 years... but will they do it?

It's England's biggest game for 28 years... but will they do it?

They beat Sweden 2-0 on Saturday, before Croatia advanced at the expense of hosts Russian Federation on penalties.

The Three Lions face Croatia for a place in Sunday's showpiece event and dabblebet have boosted England's captain to 7/5 (2.40) to score anytime. England will not change, then, and they will be ready.

He will have a central role to play against a Croatia side that relies heavily on the creativity of Real Madrid's Luka Modric and Rakitic, who plays for Barcelona.

But Young, who turned 33 on Monday, says it would be futile to focus all their efforts on stopping Modric instead of focusing on the qualities that have brought England this far. Now, up against an exhausted opponent and with their first chance at worldwide glory in 52 years nearly within grasp, the question is, can they keep it together?

Southgate, who was in the last England side that reached the semifinal of their last major tournament (Euro 1996), has carried a young and vibrant team to Russian Federation but worked his charm with the players ahead of the World Cup.

"They've got players all around the squad that are going to be hard opponents".

"This team is nowhere near the level they're going to be capable of, partly because of their age and partly because over the next few years, with us and with their clubs, they're going to have more and more big-match experiences".


Croatia have needed penalty shoot-outs to overcome Denmark and Russian Federation in the knockout stage.

Dejan Lovren talks up the talents of Harry Kane, but remains confident that he can stop the England striker from scoring against Croatia in Wednesday's semi-final. I felt something unusual in my knee and after talking with the doctor on the sideline we decided I should come off. "Like one heart, one soul".

"It has a slightly different feel for me but it's nice to hear people enjoying it again".

However, Kane's partner in attack, Raheem Sterling, has pace to burn and England's totem will be on hand to benefit if that causes problems for the Croatians. The big issue was this: why Southgate's players had started their training session at Repino on Tuesday morning by throwing around a rubber chicken? - England has scored 11 goals at this year's World Cup, tying its record from the victorious 1966 tournament. Another goal to take him towards the Golden Boot would do nicely. Should he score, he will become just the third player to score on all seven days of the week for England, after Wayne Rooney and Frank Lampard.

While many outsiders view that unexpected Croatian run to the last four as a great success, inside the country many share the view of the team's then manager Miroslav Blazevic that it was a missed opportunity.

The contribution of Raheem Sterling remains a polarising debate in England with the Manchester City forward without a goal for his country since October, 2015 but Southgate says his contribution in Russian Federation has been essential.

"Obviously we know we are playing in the World Cup, in the semi-final".

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