England's squad all train ahead of World Cup semi-final against Croatia

Tuesday, 10 Jul, 2018

Croatia's 3-0 win over Argentina in the group stage was a clear signal that the team led by midfield maestro Luka Modric was a real threat with their clever passing and movement.

England are making their first World Cup semi-final appearance since 1990, when they lost to Germany on penalties.

While England enjoyed a relatively stress-free 2-0 win over Sweden in the last eight, Croatia had to come through a gruelling extra time against hosts Russian Federation and then a penalty shootout.

Croatia, meanwhile have made the World Cup knockout rounds for the first time since 1998, when they reached the semi-final and finished third overall. I'm not going to focus on that.

"We experienced the extra time and penalties (against Colombia) and we know the physical and emotional effect of that", he said. It's important that we do our best on the pitch.

Should the same XI that started the game against Sweden line up to face Croatia?How to follow:Live on BBC Radio 5 live, live text commentary online, mobile, the BBC Sport app and Connected TV.

The England captain, who has not scored from open play since England's rout of Panama in their second group match, does not have the lightning speed that would expose the lack of pace in the Croatian central defence.

Asked what he would be demanding from his players, the England coach told ITV: "To be able to keep doing what we have been doing, play with real defensive discipline, good organisation, tactical awareness and then with the ball play with the freedom and expression that we have and the same patterns and movements that we have shown".

Gareth Southgate's side's potency from set-pieces was certainly on the minds of Croatia after they were forced into penalties by Russian Federation.

The goalkeeper struggled with a muscle injury during Croatia's quarter-final victory over Russia, Subasic needing treatment in extra-time before a heroic performance in the penalty shoot-out.