‘We’re Gutted’: English Players React After WC Semi-Final Loss
England's World Cup semi-final loss to Croatia will hurt for a long time, captain Harry Kane said after their 2-1 extra-time defeat on Wednesday, 11 July.
"It's tough, we're gutted," he said. "We worked so hard, the fans were amazing, it was a tough game, a 50-50 game, when we look back we will think there's stuff we could have done better.”
"We worked as hard as we could... it hurts, it hurts a lot and it will hurt for a long time. We have had a fantastic journey, further than we thought," he added.
After Kieran Trippier's fifth-minute goal, England looked on course for their first final since 1996. But Croatia levelled through Ivan Perisic after 68 minutes, and then took the lead in extra time with Mandzukic scoring in the 109th minute.
"We created some good chances when we were 1-0 up, maybe we dropped a little too deep but we didn't get enough pressure on the ball. There are a lot of ifs and buts, in these games it's small margins."
"It's hard to say (what went wrong). There's a lot we could have done better. They played well and made it difficult for us... it's hard to put your finger on it."
If they had beaten Croatia, England would have reached only their second World Cup final. In their other appearance, in 1966, in London, they entered popular folklore by beating West Germany, an achievement that many fans have long thought they would never see again.
Here’s what the English players had to say after their heartbreaking loss.