England penalties win over Colombia seen by 24m


GETTY England vs Colombia Gareth Southgate has labelled the game as the biggest in a decade

Speaking post-match, as reported by Sky Sports, he said: "It was a night where I knew we'd get over the line". Because England always loses when it goes to penalties.

With such euphoria surrounding the side, England finished second in the group which was possibly a blessing in disguise as it gives them a chance to be in the final facing oppositions that are unseeded. Both teams had the talent to make a run, and one will look back on Russian Federation as a real opportunity to reach a World Cup final.

Then comes a potential semi-final against hosts Russian Federation or Croatia with Tuesday's win appearing to vindicate - just - coach Gareth Southgate's decision to field a second-string side in the the final group game loss to Belgium to secure an easier route.

Maradona, whose famous "Hand of God" goal helped knock England out of the 1986 World Cup, nailed his colours to the Colombian mast after Argentina were eliminated at the hands of France and was pictured wearing the team's jersey on social media. Now back to full form and fitness, the Colombian skipper is a very unsafe player and one that certainly Gareth Southgate must have spoken about at length in his team meetings.

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His performances at the World Cup have caught the eye of several clubs; however, he claimed he would take some time out to consider his future.

Knowing that a goal would end decades' worth of heartache and send the Three Lions into the World Cup quarterfinals, Eric Dier stepped up to the spot with both teams - and millions around the world - watching on.

Meanwhile, Colombia's attempts to launch counter attacks were also in vain in front of England's defense.

That path will only raise expectations into the stratosphere, though.

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Paris Saint Germain striker Mbappe illuminated the match with his electric turn of pace and sharp dribbling. The challenge for Uruguay here is that their defense is going to really be tested.

Now with a quarter final against Sweden in Samara to look forward to on Saturday, the England boss will make sure he eradicates any complacency ahead of the game against a side that the Three Lions are yet to beat in a World Cup encounter. "We are not a rich country but everyone has found a way to be here because we are very emotional, very patriotic" she said.

Substitute Danny Rose nearly struck an extra-time victor when his angled shot whistled beyond the far post, and Eric Dier headed over unmarked at a corner before England's luck deserted them again in all too familiar fashion. "If anything, we should feel freer".

They avoided losing their heads during moments of provocation from the Colombians and periods when American referee Mark Geiger lost control of the game.

"When there are so, so many fouls and interruptions I think that's not good", he said. "You want to be involved in games that matter". "There is a lot we can do to own the process, and not be controlled by it".

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