Gareth Southgate: Colombia clash is England's biggest in a decade

Dean Simpson
July 3, 2018

England have a awful penalty shootout record but Southgate, who missed the key penalty in the Euro 96 semi-finals, has helped change things.

After finishing second in their group, Southgate's England team will face the victor of Tuesday's game between Switzerland and Sweden in the last eight if they can beat Colombia.

For England, Southgate's haunted look that night is all part of a wider narrative.

He has been practising penalties and certainly there were no problems against Panama. In fact, England has twice as many goals from dead ball situations (four) as it does from open play (two) to go along with having 58.6 percent of its shots come from that (17 of 29). It's much cooler in Moscow than it has been but he might need more than that a waistcoat on Tuesday - especially if it goes to a shoot-out.

The 24-year-old was rested for England's final Group G game against Belgium last week, but he admitted that he fully supported Gareth Southgate's decision to rest several of his first choice players and Kane reckons those who did not start will be extra fresh for the Colombia fixture.

Southgate was thinking back to that night against Germany in the semi-final of Euro 96, with the game drawn 1-1, and the traumatic events that led to John Major, the prime minister, offering him a sympathetic hug outside Wembley.

Waistcoat sales at a leading British retailer are booming thanks to England coach Gareth Southgate, whose immaculate dress sense at the World Cup has won praise from fashionistas.

Stones was pictured on the England bench with heavy strapping and ice around his left calf during the second half of the game against Belgium on Thursday.

But on Monday he was still in England, reducing his chances of returning in time for the game.

Petkovic added: 'Those who know me realise I am not clinging on to the thought of what could be just in this match.

"I watched Colombia the other day and there's nothing to be scared of there for England", Merson said. "We aren't going to change for no one and no team". I think I am going to score every time I am on the pitch.

"For us we have to focus on the next game, we can't think about how well we've played in the last game or how good we are doing".

@ChrisEriksen8 you done yourself proud your country and your family and you also make the @SpursOfficial fans very proud you are a wonderful player who always gives his all and hardly ever gets injuried and always runs his heart out for the side.

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