England have potential for much more, says Southgate

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Ahead of Wednesday evening's semi-final against Croatia, Southgate urged everyone to put differences to one side to cheer his side into what would be a first World Cup final in 52 years.

So what are you waiting for?

England manager Gareth Southgate found out a long time ago that superstition was not the way for him, and is trusting his side to reach the World Cup final without having to rely on luck or rituals. "I think Rashford coming on again is the obvious first one if we're struggling to break them down, then it would obviously depend on who is struggling, be it Sterling, Dele Alli and Jesse Lingard".

Houghton missed the last qualifying match against Russian Federation, which the Lionesses won 3-1, due to undergoing knee surgery, but will be back for the start of the new season. There was a happy ending for Croatia, however, as they beat Holland 2-1 in the third-place play-off, with Suker scoring his sixth goal of the tournament to claim the Golden Boot.

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Lovren, whose nation are into the semi-finals for the first time since 1998, said Croatia could play with freedom. Stevie Staunton on Gareth Southgate: Banter Merchant and France killing all the semi-final craic. .

"I think they (England) have been fantastic, a breath of fresh air".

Blazevic parted company with Croatia in 2000 before going on to manage the likes of Iran, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Shanghai Shenhua, among many other teams.

In the words of manager Gareth Southgate, England are making their own history. The pundits laid into the players, lambasting their attitude.

"So, we were at home and I went to get changed and I thought, "Hmmm, shall I wear those socks?'".

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There are lot of ifs and buts. "This shows we can be up there, win knockout games and get to semi-finals". Look at the fans tonight, there was a lump in my throat watching the fans applaud us at the end.

Pickford's rise from non-league football to global stardom has been nothing short of inspirational to any professional footballer in the game. We still needed the win but I thought, "No, it's ridiculous". With the coach keeping his strategies close to his now-famous vest, a young roster led by Harry Kane hopes to succeed where Gary Lineker, Michael Owen, Alan Shearer, David Beckham and Wayne Rooney failed.

After the Iceland game, we knew that things needed to change.

Incredible scenes have filled the town centre after the team progressed through the competition reaching the semi-finals for the first time in 28 years.

"I don't know what you're saying in the dressing room to the players, but whatever you're saying, it's working".

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"It's quite unusual for me to witness all the hype and the crowds and how excited they are because that's what it must have been (like) in Italia 90 when we got to the semis", he explained.

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