Unlike the Olympics, where winning third place comes with a bronze medal and some sense of accomplishment, at the World Cup it's only a brutal reminder of how close you came.
"We, as a team, have made incredible progress and probably got to a stage where at the start of the tournament we would have considered a success". They produced a Herculean effort to get over the line against England at the Luzhniki Stadium, but may have to go the distance again to see off this brilliant French side.
"I know everything about Croatia, I have lived the country intensely in all my life, since its history on all the sports of the country".
Although that would not be a sacrifice hahahaha, but since I cannot do it, I would offer my house to see Croatia world champion!
There is no doubt it has helped England's players see what is possible, too, and what they can now achieve with the emergence of talent from their all-conquering junior sides. "We felt we were good enough but have fallen just a bit short".
"It is a very odd game because it's a fixture for two teams coming off the back of a disappointment, but the game is there and we need to play it", said the Chelsea man.
A collection of front pages after England loses to Croatia in the World Cup.
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A Tropical Storm Warning means that tropical storm conditions are expected somewhere within the warning area. Further strengthening of the storm is likely, and Chris is expected to become a hurricane by mid-week.
- Gareth SouthgateRobbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty ImagesTHANKING THE FANSFrom England Twitter: "To everyone who supported us". As well as our first World Cup semi-final for 28 years, our first win in a knock-out game since 2006 and our first win in a World Cup penalty shootout, he has given us hope, and something to cheer. We went a lot further than I thought we would & performed with great credit on & off the pitch.
"He wasn't even moving around in the second half against Colombia".
What epitomised all of that for me was the way the England fans behaved this week, after arriving in their thousands before the semi-final.
"People in Brazil do not understand I do not feel passion for the Brazilian team that already has won 5 world titles, Croatia filled everything I could feel for the Brazilian team".
Across teams, there have been a number of players who have stolen the headlines for their displays and maybe rightly so but there have been many who put in superb shifts for the team.
- Belgium and England are the first teams to face each other twice at a World Cup tournament since Turkey played Brazil twice at the 2002 World Cup.