Many Irish will echo Gareth Southgate's attitude to 'football's coming home' song

Rex Christensen
July 11, 2018

"We've gone from Baddiel and Skinner and Three Lions right through to Gareth Southgate and, here we are 20 years later, right back to square one again".

Saturday's 2-0 victory over Sweden took manager Gareth Southgate's team into a World Cup semi-final for the first time in 28 years, raising the prospect of England possibly winning the tournament for the first time since 1966.

Mia Šetula, a Croatian student at Bournemouth University, admitted she will be cheering for England's opponents tonight.

The mum-of-three also went to the infant school herself and said: 'I'm a passionate England fan, our whole family are, and I remember Gareth from the days he used to play with the Neville brothers and David Beckham.

"Our players did a great job". For a stage as grand as the FIFA World Cup, a combination of elite footballers within a dynamic tactical system is often the easiest route to strike gold, as Didier Deschamps has managed to do with France, leading Les Bleus to successive finals in 2016 Euro and 2018 World Cup.

"Sometimes I think these things are written and the way this tournament has opened up for England, is one of the reasons it feels like this is their time".

Get your waistcoats out, LADS!

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If Harry Maguire was a man in demand before the World Cup, he most certainly will be after it, too.

"I'm certainly proud of the support we're receiving".

He said: "This team is nowhere near the level they're going to be capable of, partly because of their age, but also because they'll have more big-match experiences over the next few years with their clubs and with us".

"I'm excited to see if Croatian fans are as excited as we are".

About a dozen England fans passing through Heathrow wore dark blue waistcoats over their T-shirts in tribute to Southgate who has taken to wearing a waistcoat on the touch-line along with suit pants and a dress shirt and tie.

He said he that England would reach the final and that he expected the atmosphere in Croatia to be electric. I am ignoring the meaningless match against Belgium.

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