Gutted. Absolutely gutted. I can’t find any other words to describe the feelings I have after thinking England were ready to conquer the world.
I went all in to say football was coming home and for long periods of Wednesday night, I thought the dream was coming true.
It started so well. I watched the first 45 minutes with increasing admiration. We all recognise the 4-1 win over Holland at Euro 96 as the most exciting England performance of the modern era, but I’ve never seen us more composed.
Nobody caught my eye more than John Stones, who was so good and is a classy defender
But come the final whistle Stones and the rest of the Three Lions squad were left heartbroken
This is what we have always wanted, to see. England dominant, full of confidence and players showing they were made for this stage. Among the many stand-out performers, nobody caught my eye more than John Stones, who was so good.
I’ve always had time for him, he’s a classy defender. If only his header in the first half of extra time, which was cleared off the line, had dropped in… that would have been the game, there and then.
That would have been immortality for these boys, who have given us so much joy this summer.
Stones had an extra-time header cleared off the line as England sought a winner in Moscow
But for all that dominance and the lead we had, I was nervous going into the second half. I’ve talked Croatia up several times over the course of the past month.
They are a proper team and the way they fought back illustrated all their qualities.
You have to give credit where it is due and they deserve to be in the World Cup final. Croatia have shown so much character that I wouldn’t bet against them finishing the job against France. I just wish it was us.
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