No surprise Sterling is Croatian focal point, says Southgate

Gareth Southgate

Southgate praised his players for their diligence and commitment ahead of a game that he believes his players approach as well prepared as possible.

For a team who have been consistently well-organised and effective throughout this tournament, it was a unusual state of affairs but crucially they were able to turn it around and England had no answer.

109' GOAL! Croatia 2-1 England: Maaaaaaandzukic! Below you will find all the relevant details regarding the online streaming of Croatia vs England football match. While France and Belgium did fulfil that potential, two teams that were not expected to be in the semi-finals are Croatia and England. Therefore, Vedran Corluka could replace the Atletico Madrid star.

Before this game, Jordan Henderson hadn't been on the losing side in any of his last 30 England matches (W23 D7), the longest unbeaten run of any England player in history. He has escaped with just a warning and is available for selection.

The players meet again on Wednesday when Croatia and England clash and, with a place in the World Cup final at stake, there is no better time and chance for Lovren to finally redeem himself.

He said: "They were the better team, that's all that happened".

While Dejan Lovren has gotten most of the footballing attention from the Croatian defence, Vida has been more consistent for a Croatian defence that has only conceded four goals in five games.

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Live Stream and TV Info for Croatia Vs. England
But that's not all Timberlake did to show his support for England as it takes on Croatia in the World Cup semifinal Wednesday. The players have already bettered expectations, with the whole of England buying into the team and their recent performances.

"We thought we were just good enough, we thought we could have done that". There will be legitimate questions about how much they have left in the tank. The form of Raheem Sterling has been a cause of concern right through the campaign in Russian Federation but the Manchester City man has the trust of his gaffer and should start against Croatia.

That focus on collective success over individual achievement has been key to England's success this summer, putting them within touching distance of joining the heroes of 1966 as the only team to make a World Cup final. "So tonight we weren't quite there, but the team will be stronger for that".

Croatia had been desperately poor, a shadow of the team who carved Argentina apart in the group stage, but started to get a foothold in the game as the match rolled past the hour mark and Luka Modric's influence grew. They should have turned up, it's the semi-final of a World Cup.

The second semi-final of the 2018 FIFA World Cup will see Croatia locking horns with England. The crucial game is scheduled to be played at Luzhniki Stadium.

That allowed Croatia to reach the semi-finals for the first time since the 1998 World Cup in France, which was their first as an independent nation.

Tense moments followed for the 12th man as Croatia tried to pile the pressure on and fans had their hearts in their mouths when the score was only kept level by some desperate England defending.

John Stones had a fine World Cup and will leave the tournament, after the 3rd place playoff, with his reputation enhanced.

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