England tried to score while Croatia celebrated

Croatia vs England

A sublime free-kick from Kieran Trippier put England ahead, but goals from Ivan Perisic and Mario Mandzukic saw Croatia to a 2-1 win after extra-time.

But Croatia summoned the strength to come back in the second half, equalising through Ivan Perisic before Mario Mandzukic got the victor in the 109th minute.

It was heartbreak for England, but joy for those who backed Croatia at a high of [40.0] to win in extra-time in the Method of Victory market.

England manager Gareth Southgate insists his side will face their toughest challenge of the World Cup to date when they lock horns with Croatia in the semi-final.

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

"England have reason to cry because they were so close to [reaching the World Cup final], but they have also have reason to be optimistic", Manchester United boss Mourinho told RT. "We made it to the finals, no one believed in us, every pundit out there was thinking England but we showed the world", another jubilant fan said.

The injuries started to pile up, legs looked gassed and the opportunity to seal it became reality for Mandzukic, who sneaked behind the back of England defender John Stones to score the victor.

Croatia have been taken to penalties twice in the knockout stages and again had to endure extra time against England.

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"The all-round perception was that this is a new-look England who have changed their ways of punting long balls upfield but when we pressed them it turned out that they haven't", Vrsaljko said.

"But the team will be stronger for that and as we reflect over the next few days, there will be a lot more positives".

"Of course it´s going to be a really hard task over the next 24 hours to get everyone mentally back to where we want them for a game like that". Yet what Sterling has lacked at this World Cup in goals, he has made up for with his sheer work-rate and intelligent movement in attacking areas of the pitch.

"England's four and a half weeks at the World Cup deserves a little better".

The win sent tens of thousands of French people pouring onto the Champs-Elysees avenue in Paris in scenes of joy last seen when France won the World Cup two decades ago.

But it took just five minutes into the semi-final for Trippier to write his name on the score sheet.

It was a painful defeat for Belgium, foiled at the semifinal for the second time in their history, as the clock ticks on their so-called "golden generation" of players.

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