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England fans react to Croatia goal and match heads into extra time

12 July 2018

The Three Lions suffered an extra-time 2-1 defeat at the hands of Croatia in Moscow, after a roller-coaster game which saw England take an early lead through Kieran Trippier, only for a second-half equaliser from Ivan Perisic to take the game to extra time and set up Mario Mandzukic's late victor.

Vrsaljko, who plays for Atletico Madrid, had struggled to be ready for the match after playing in two previous extra-time matches, but he found the strength to lift his exhausted, battered team to a comeback win. It wasn't easy, but I think we were physically ready.

"Tonight we weren´t quite there but we will learn from that. We left everything out there". The team will be stronger [in defeat]. "We have to be proud".

"It hurts. I don't know what else to say".

England manager Southgate resisted the temptation to tinker with his starting line-up, picking the same side which overcame Colombia on penalties in the last-16 and Sweden in the quarter-finals.

Croatia's supporters celebrate the second goal as they watch on a giant screen the Russian Federation 2018 World Cup semi-final football match between Croatia and England, at the main square in Zagreb.

The goal continued the side's astonishing success from set-pieces at the World Cup - they scored nine goals from set-pieces - the most by any team in a single tournament since 1966.

It was a different game from then on, with Croatia suddenly playing with accuracy and goal as England lost their shape and composure, though Kane missed a chance to win it in stoppage time when he headed wide from a free kick.

Though England will return to the country without the World Cup trophy, Kane could bring home an individual award as the tournament's top scorer.

"We all feel the pain of the defeat". Did we expect to be in this position?

"But we handled it well, but unfortunately we conceded at the wrong time, after that I thought we again picked it up again and done well".

"There was a spell in the second half when they got the goal and their tails were really up and we had to weather the storm and lost our way a little bit".

"There will in time be a lot of positives to take", he added. "It´s too easy to move on quickly".

England will return to their Repino base near Saint Petersburg ahead of Saturday´s third place play-off against Belgium, a repeat of their final group match.

"The honest thing is it´s not a game any team wants to play", Southgate admitted. "We worked so hard, the fans were awesome, it was a tough game, a 50-50 game, when we look back we will think there's stuff we could have done better. That will be the challenge".

England fans react to Croatia goal and match heads into extra time