Selfless Raheem Sterling proves his worth to England despite semi-final defeat


Kieran Trippier gave England an early lead only for Ivan Perisic to equalise in the 68th minute and Mario Mandzukic to score the victor in the second period of extra time.

Mario Mandzukic scored the winning goal in the 109th minute and Croatia shocked England 2-1 Wednesday.

England manager Gareth Southgate addressed his players and staff at their base in Repino on Thursday following their crushing World Cup semi-final defeat to Croatia.

They served the first game of the ban in a behind-closed-doors clash against Bulgaria back in October 2015. "We worked so hard, the fans were wonderful, it was a tough game, a 50-50 game, when we look back we will think there's stuff we could have done better".

But Ivan Perisic grabbed the equaliser in the 68th minute, getting an outstretched boot to Sime Vrsaljko's cross and guiding the ball past England goalkeeper Jordan Pickford.

"Have another glass. Take another look, if you can, at those moments from Kaliningrad to Moscow when this capable England team played above itself and turned a drowsy, toxic summer back home into something else. It's unlucky we couldn't bring it home for them, but hopefully there's time in the future".

"After the experiences of the matches with Colombia and Sweden and the whole thing, it's probably beyond where we thought we might be able to go, so tonight in the end, we weren't quite there". It wasn't easy, but I think we were physically ready. The Inter Milan winger soon hit the woodwork, as England managed to hold on and take the game into extra-time.

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Croatia is trolling the England national soccer team after dumping it out of the 2018 FIFA World Cup in heartbreaking fashion.

"And like I said, they should be more humble and respect more opponents".

When asked to explain the reason behind Croatia's comeback, Dalić speaking to Sky Sports said: "Because we were the better team in all segments of the game".

"Nobody wanted to give in when I was preparing the first eleven, nobody wanted to say I was not ready in extra time, no one wanted to be subbed and this shows character and what makes me proud".

Croatia's attitude to the game changing radically in the second-half and players who looked like they were afraid began to play for the first time.

To go from being derided as a bit useless to being in the final of both the Champions League and World Cup final in the space of a month is pretty good going, and that's exactly what's happened for Dejan Lovren.