Gareth Southgate Insists He Knew England Would Beat Colombia to Reach World Cup Quarter Finals

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Gareth Southgate insists he knew England would beat Colombia to reach the quarter finals of the World Cupas his side overcome the South Americans 4-3 on penalties after the game finished 1-1 after extra time.

The game appeared to be going England’s way after Harry Kane’s sixth goal of the tournament from the spot after the 57th minute, but Yerry Mina’s 93rd minute header sent the final last 16 tie to extra time, with penalties following swiftly after. 

Despite England’s retched shootout record at the World Cup, losing their previous three shootouts, the Three Lions held their nerve to reach the last eight for the first time since 2006, although Southgate was always confident his side would.

Speaking post-match, as reported by Sky Sports, he said: “It was a night where I knew we’d get over the line. We had the resilience and the belief to get over the line, whatever it takes.

“We had total belief in what we were doing, right through to the end. Even when our first penalty was saved, I’ve seen enough shootouts where the first penalty missed isn’t the key one.

“I’m proud of the way my team played. I thought we controlled the game in the 90 minutes, played with great discipline, we were very composed with the ball and in a big game that was impressive from a young group of players.”

In what was a tough last 16 tie, England had to overcome a Colombia side that frequently resorted to unsporting tactics throughout the game, with Southgate stating how proud he was of the way his players conducted themselves in the face of Los Cafeteros’ gamesmanship. 

He continued, stating: “I thought there were many, many fouls in the game and I don’t think we conceded anywhere near the number of our opponents.

“I’m proud of the discipline. We kept our composure in a really difficult environment and we deserved to win.”

Now with a quarter final against Sweden in Samara to look forward to on Saturday, the England boss will make sure he eradicates any complacency ahead of the game against a side that the Three Lions are yet to beat in a World Cup encounter. 

Southgate concluded, stating: “Sweden are a team I respect hugely. We’ve not got a good record against them, we’ve always underestimated them, they have good players and a clear way of playing, and it’s bloody difficult to play against.”

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