Southgate proud of England support after 20 years of personal hurt

Wednesday, 11 Jul, 2018

Two moments from England's first half against Sweden made the highlight reel for Raheem Sterling - first when he was deemed just offside after being one-on-one with the keeper, secondly when he failed to beat the Swedish custodian from a close range.

Their run to their semi-final against Croatia has seen the song Football's Coming Home storm to number one in the charts, 22 years after it was released ahead of Euro 96.

It became an instant hit and was belted out in pubs, night clubs, on the streets and in football stadiums throughout the tournament as an England team featuring centre back Southgate reached the semi-finals.

Gareth Southgate's England side have exceeded all expectations in Russian Federation this summer with the Three Lions preparing to face Croatia tonight, in, what will be just the third World Cup semi-final in their history.

"I couldn't listen to it for 20 years, frankly", said Southgate.

"Sometimes we judge him about "he missed that goal", "he missed again that shot", but the number of actions he creates, the assists today, he creates fouls, penalties, because he's so fast and quick, sometimes he is unstoppable in those situations", Pep Guardiola said last season about Sterling's dramatic transformation when he managed to net 23 Premier League goals.

If Southgate's young side overcome Russian Federation tonight they will face France in the World Cup final next Sunday in Moscow, their first final since 1966.

However, former Manchester United defender Gary Neville has revealed that he was anxious about about how three England players would cope going into the tournament.

"It had tactical understanding, it had technically good players".

"But we approached this tournament in the same way. We were a group of guys having a lot of fun, enjoying our football, learning and improving all the time - and that's what these lads have done".