England's wonderful World Cup hunt alive and kicking

England's wonderful World Cup hunt alive and kicking

England had a 1-0 lead at halftime in the quarterfinal match after Harry Maguire's header from a corner kick in the 30th bounced before it beat Sweden goalkeeper Robin Olson.

England's deep run also is a surprise.

Sweden got its best chance two minutes into the second half on Marcus Berg's header, but England goalkeeper Jordan Pickford pushed it out of harm's way.

Viktor Claesson's hopeful effort from distance was the best rudimentary Sweden managed in a scrappy opening, but the Three Lions were doing little better as Alli overhit a through ball after snatching possession off over-confident Emil Krafth. "The fans at home, I'm sure we'll see some videos tonight of them enjoying it".

Confidence, optimism and expectation is sweeping the country as England supporters dare to dream football may be on its way home.

Alli proved his critics wrong two minutes before the hour mark when he met Kieran Trippier's cross with a deft header to put England firmly in the ascendancy.

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The scoreline stayed the same for the remainder, with Alli, Raheem Sterling and Harry Kane continuing to menace Sweden's defence, while Jordan Pickford made a string of smart saves to preserve England's clean sheet.

Sterling got hold of the loose ball but his shot was deflected over.Sterling's movement was very good, though, causing Sweden's slow defense problems throughout. He is likely to retain his starting place for the semifinals.

Virtually from kickoff, Sweden sent long passes forward to tall striker Ola Toivonen and looked for a flick-on. The English team defeated Sweden 2-0.

They lacked the resilience displayed in the last-16 defeat of Switzerland, but Andersson said the outcome was through England's excellence more than anything.

"I gathered the players on the pitch and told them we had a bloody good tournament".

It was another thrilling night of FIFA World Cup action, with England continuing their great form with a professional display against Sweden, while Croatia prevailed in one of the more pulsating encounters over host nation Russian Federation.

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