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Belgiums B team are better than most of the first teams taking part in the tournament. You can't really read anything into the performance last night.

The media's 'easy route to the final' campaign is just bullshit. None of those teams left are going to be easy to beat. Croatia v Brazil final looking quite likely to me.

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EUfkdup said:
Belgiums B team are better than most of the first teams taking part in the tournament. You can't really read anything into the performance last night.

The media's 'easy route to the final' campaign is just ****. None of those teams left are going to be easy to beat. Croatia v Brazil final looking quite likely to me.
TBH it didn't look like we were trying to win almost like we were happy to lose which sends out the wrong message to me but I do agree with you in that I think either Spain or Brazil will win again.

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I just asked Alexa if football is coming home, she said "52 years of hurt hasn't stopped me dreaming"

It's coming home.

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And I still don't think it is. I fanything the game against Belguim was a big own goal and I think it will work against them.

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How will it? Premier league teams do it all the time, when there's a cup game and they rest players for the league, it doesn't affect their league performance or momentum.

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Hughesy said:
How will it? Premier league teams do it all the time, when there's a cup game and they rest players for the league, it doesn't affect their league performance or momentum.


Yes PL team do it but Leagues are all about maintaining consistency over a long period Cups are all about being able to perform on the day and managers have to prioritize which competitions are most important to them Gareth on the other hand only has to worry about 1 the world cup which is for the most part a cup competition Generally the best way to win a cup competition is to keep building momentum not resting your players because you think you can get away with it. Because invariably if you do that you will get caught out.

Making as many changes as he did was risky and we got caught out by Belgium and I just feel it's likely going to cost momentum as well of course I don't know for certain but that's what I feel. I want England to win of course I just don't feel that it's going to happen as I still think there are better teams in the competition than us. If we'd have kept that momentum going and beat Belgium then maybe I'd have felt we'd have a chance but with how that game played out I still have my doubts because for me the team had a chance to really show what they could do and for me they blew it.


Also league managers have to deal with 50/60 games a season a national team manager assuming they go the distance of a World Cup only has to worry about 7 at most. 3 group 4 knockout and that's assuming their team goes the distance.

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England winning a penalty shoot-out, it is definitely coming home.

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Justice really.

Should have been down to 10 men, then delayed the penalty by 5 minutes, also scuffed the penalty spot up before it was taken, so that should have been a red. Then scored in 5 mins added time, when it was Colombia themselves that wasted the time so there shouldn't have been that much added on.


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Hughesy said:
Justice really.

Should have been down to 10 men, then delayed the penalty by 5 minutes, also scuffed the penalty spot up before it was taken, so that should have been a red. Then scored in 5 mins added time, when it was Colombia themselves that wasted the time so there shouldn't have been that much added on.


yeah it was justice I have to admit I am starting to believe now after that penalty shoot out. However for me we still need to do better against Sweden though and given how good they can be on the defence it's not going to be easy. But I agree they could easily had and probably should have had 1 or 2 people sent off there. The ref was very lenient too lenient to be honest. But we did let them come back at us in the end we can't afford that against Sweden.

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This is the first beer I've had since like January lol. I shouldn't drink really because of the meds I take, but normally do, for what ever reason I haven't for ages. There's more beer in my fridge than food haha. I can tell you, the buzz you get after a few beers when you haven't had any alcohol in months is so good, starting with a 8% strength beer probably wasn't smart. Anyway I'm rambling, it's coming home!

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Hughesy said:
This is the first beer I've had since like January lol. I shouldn't drink really because of the meds I take, but normally do, for what ever reason I haven't for ages. There's more beer in my fridge than food haha. I can tell you, the buzz you get after a few beers when you haven't had any alcohol in months is so good, starting with a 8% strength beer probably wasn't smart. Anyway I'm rambling, it's coming home!
Yeah I think it is now if Russia fall to Croatia I think definitely it's in our hands. However facing Russia on it's own turf could prove difficult if we're not careful. I would prefer facing Croatia than Russia but if we can play the way we have done we can beat them. But playing Russia on their own turf is the bit the concerns me most.

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Guys I’m just dropping in here to tell you.. that the only thing that’s coming home, is the French with a World Cup trophy in their hands.

while I am Irish and the only English teams I will ever cheer for are Man United and Red Bull Racing (who are technically Austrian) I am far more salty about France so I believe I am entitled to an opinion c:

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So originally I was just saying it's coming home as a joke, didn't actually think we would. But now I do believe. Next round is very winnable against a aging team who have gone through two extra times, so will be tired.

@Reub09 I think Belgium have a good chance of beating France, but I'd love a France vs England final.

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I've thought since before it started we should have a decent chance, everyone thought i was mad :lol: good job i backed us at 16/1 

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Hughesy said:
So originally I was just saying it's coming home as a joke, didn't actually think we would. But now I do believe. Next round is very winnable against a aging team who have gone through two extra times, so will be tired.

@Reub09 I think Belgium have a good chance of beating France, but I'd love a France vs England final.
Same, even though I like Croatia there wouldn’t be the same buzz around the final if they were in it

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Hughesy said:
So originally I was just saying it's coming home as a joke, didn't actually think we would. But now I do believe. Next round is very winnable against a aging team who have gone through two extra times, so will be tired.

@Reub09 I think Belgium have a good chance of beating France, but I'd love a France vs England final.

Yeah same here although in my case I was honest about it I thought the same as Shearer that at best we might sneak into a quarter final and that would be it. I knew we'd get through the group as it looked fairly easy with Belgium being the only hard game I thought come on there's no way we'd be able to take the fight to Germany, Brazil, Portugal, Spain and Argentina they've got to be favourites. Mainly because at least 1 of that group always wins. 


At least not with the squad we've got but with the favourites falling one by one because they've not been really at it it's really opened up and now I think any one of the 4 teams left could  win us included. I can see us overcoming Croatia because as you've said they've had to put  more mileage on the clock to get here than we have and it's likely to wear on them a bit. But Belgium and France are both going to be difficult games I think regardless especially as Belgium have already beaten us once. I know both teams took their foot off the gas a bit for that one but still if they can do it to us once without even trying they can do it again.

I think the fact we're going the distance means we can be proud of our teams efforts either way though because even if we do lose to Croatia we'll still get to play for the bronze and by getting this far we've exceeded our expectations.  I think if you told Gareth after he missed that penalty in Euro 96 that 20 years later he'd be leading England into a World Cup semi final he'd likely laughed and told you to get lost. But I think he and his team he has at his disposal can be very proud of what they have achieved.


I am glad we got Croatia instead of Russia though as I think Russia would have been a really tough game. Especially as given Russia being the hosts we'd not just be playing the 11 on the pitch but the whole country and that does somewhat up the ante in their favour. Thankfully Croatia took care of them so no longer a problem.

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Crazy how this World Cup has gone, never been a better chance to get to a final! It seems as if everyone is getting involved and supporting the team in a way I've not seen before myself. Really hope we can make that final, the Croatia game will be very tight and I can see them dominating the midfield with Brozovic, Rakatic and Modric.

The set pieces have been incredibly well done by Gareth and his staff. Imagine if we hadn't worked so hard on them, we'd probably have struggled quite a bit due to our failure to convert a lot of chances from open play. That's my one concern about the next game and possible final really, the fact that we have barely scored from open play. But in a one off match it only takes 1 clear chance being converted to win so there's always a chance :D

If we can continue to evolve and improve, I'm really looking forward to seeing how we do in Euro 2020 and WC 2022, the team will only be getting better and more experienced from here, for the most part. Need to find a younger version of Henderson though, he has surprisingly been one of our most indispensable players and he's 28, may not be quite as good in 2022. Also when I say about evolving and improving, that goes for Gareth as well, I think he made an error against Colombia by replacing Alli with Dier and sitting back for example, and again against Tunisia by not replacing an injured Alli until too late. But on the whole he's done a brilliant job. Thought for ages we needed an identity and system and finally we have something, and a man who is prepared to do something a bit different to the other recent England managers going with a 3 at the back and ditching the old has been's like Rooney and Hart. Honestly England in tournament football without Rooney is so refreshing... 

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AMS97KRR said:
Crazy how this World Cup has gone, never been a better chance to get to a final! It seems as if everyone is getting involved and supporting the team in a way I've not seen before myself. Really hope we can make that final, the Croatia game will be very tight and I can see them dominating the midfield with Brozovic, Rakatic and Modric.

The set pieces have been incredibly well done by Gareth and his staff. Imagine if we hadn't worked so hard on them, we'd probably have struggled quite a bit due to our failure to convert a lot of chances from open play. That's my one concern about the next game and possible final really, the fact that we have barely scored from open play. But in a one off match it only takes 1 clear chance being converted to win so there's always a chance :D

If we can continue to evolve and improve, I'm really looking forward to seeing how we do in Euro 2020 and WC 2022, the team will only be getting better and more experienced from here, for the most part. Need to find a younger version of Henderson though, he has surprisingly been one of our most indispensable players and he's 28, may not be quite as good in 2022. Also when I say about evolving and improving, that goes for Gareth as well, I think he made an error against Colombia by replacing Alli with Dier and sitting back for example, and again against Tunisia by not replacing an injured Alli until too late. But on the whole he's done a brilliant job. Thought for ages we needed an identity and system and finally we have something, and a man who is prepared to do something a bit different to the other recent England managers going with a 3 at the back and ditching the old has been's like Rooney and Hart. Honestly England in tournament football without Rooney is so refreshing... 
I think we can get past Croatia due to them having to go the long way round so to speak to get to the semi's so I think fatigue could play a part in this game. I'm not saying it's going to be an easy game but without doubt I do think ours is the easiest of the 2 semi's. Belgium v France will be much harder to call and both will be difficult opponents in the final/3rd place match. I think regardless of what happens from here on in though I think we've done ourselves proud in Russia. To reach our first semi final since 1990 is a tremendous achievement so these guys can hold their heads up high regardless of the score.

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Just got my supplies ready, an assortment of craft beers, a large hot dog stuffed crust pizza, some Doritos and dip, I'm so ready!

Edit: Can't even be arsed to put a pizza in the oven tonight, so I've ordered a Dominos for the first time in ages. I set delivery for 6pm even though kick-off isn't until 7, just in case the pizza is late, as I don't want it to come when the football has already started.

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It's                                                         

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Well I'm watching the match from the pavillion in the national paddock here at Silverstone, there is actually a Croation team here too  :D

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It's coming home, but in typical British fashion, bus was cancelled, so missed the train and it's now on a slow ass road replacement service.

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