Gareth Southgate 'incredibly proud' as England's World Cup adventure ends

Three key battles which could determine the World Cup final

Inside the Luzhniki Stadium, a full hour after losing their semi-final 2-1 to Croatia, and 10,000 England supporters who had made their way to Russian Federation were waiting.

Croatia reaching the World Cup final is staggering, but they produced a bigger miracle in the World Cup of 1998, reaching the semifinals and ending up third - merely three years after the country emerged victorious from the civil war that splintered Yugoslavia into Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Macedonia, Serbia and Slovenia.

Several Manchester United stars are free to go on their holidays and rest up ahead of the new season after completing their worldwide duties in the 2018 World Cup third place play-off. Should Croatia finish second to France, he will miss the runners-up medal.

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Nishikori capitalised on this lapse in concentration, putting together his finest game of the match to break and then consolidate. I always enjoy playing against him.

"I couldn't ask any more of any of my players today or right through the seven weeks we have worked together".

"Croatia is a small European country of four million inhabitants, and we say that we have four million coaches as well", he said. I thought (John) Stones was absolutely outstanding and (Jordan) Pickford has had a wonderful tournament.

"Today is the seventh game in a short period of time, and we've had incredible physical demands and emotional demands on the least experienced team in the tournament", Southgate said when put to him that the striker looked exhausted. "But if I win it, it'll be something I'll be very proud of".

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Lovren also called for Croatia team-mate Luka Modric to receive the highest individual award in world football, the Ballon d'Or. Croatia will face France in their first-ever World Cup final at Moscow's Luzhniki Stadium on Monday morning at 1:00am AEST.

And the fact he has played arguably the best football of his career this summer, and could end Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi's Ballon d'Or duopoly, suggests he views his legal woes either as trivial by comparison or simply another obstacle to be overcome.

"Today was always going to be a really hard game".

Manager Zlatko Dalic nevertheless said: "We want the whole world to watch Croatia play. He (Kane) has captained the team exceptionally well, he has led the culture we are trying to create".

Cesc Fabregas leaks news of Antonio Conte sacking?
Italian Sarri, 59, joined Napoli in 2015 and led them to second behind champions Juventus last season. Since the end of the 2017-18 Premier League season, Chelsea and Maurizio Sarri have been linked.

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