So, it is probably actually coming home, isn’t it?
England win a penalty shootout. ENGLAND WIN A PENALTY SHOOTOUT. AT THE WORLD CUP. This World Cup defies all logic – it is actually coming home.
Now, only Sweden and Russia or Croatia stand in the way of England and a first World Cup final since 1966.
Sink in deep and drink in how Twitter reacted from start to finish, as described below…
It was a great start by England. Pace, pressure, crispness of passing, they had it all. And while they didn’t create too much in terms of chances until the 16th minute, there was an aura about them. A sense of command.
When the first opportunity did come, Harry Kane put the ball over the bar – but it was Kieran Trippier’s pinpoint cross that made people take notice.
In truth, the first half passed by without either side giving too much away. England shaded it, but will have been aggrieved to have not been handed a one man advantage after Tottenham target Wilmar Barrios was caught head-butting Jordan Henderson.
It went across to VAR, and excitement grew. Surely that’s a red, right?
Nah, wrong. Not according to this referee. A headbutt is not a red card.
Hendo made the most of it…
This had turned from an exciting game into World Cup fight wars – and Colombia’s tactics were shown up even brighter after one of their coaching staff (yes, coaching staff, not a player) gave The S*n’s favourite son Raheem Sterling a shoulder barge as he jogged into the dressing room.
He even dropped an evil grin. He’s basically Cristiano ‘The Winker’ Ronaldo from back in 2006.
Colombia’s sh*thouse tactics, though, did come back to bite them ten minutes into the second half. Harry Kane was fouled by Carlos Sanchez, and the referee pointed to the penalty spot.
Minutes went by. The Colombia players scuffed up the penalty spot. But, BANG.
They had the lead, and it was playing right into England’s hands.
Nobody was too sure of the reasons why, but Colombia’s tactic of trying to tick England off had backfired, and all the South American outfit seemed intent on doing was picking up bookings.
Perhaps that’s how you win World Cup matches?
Ten minutes left, cruising. You know what that means. Scare of a lifetime.
Kyle Walker’s brainfart allowed Colombia a big break, but Juan Cuadrado ended up blowing the chance over the bar.
Colombia stepped it up a bit for the final 15. But England, while sitting deeper and deeper, looked in control even as injury time ticked through.
Then, out of the blue, Mateus Uribe’s shot from 35 yards scared the life out of everybody. Jordan Pickford made an unbelievable save.
From the resulting corner and patch of play though, y’know. England gonna England.
Yep, me too.
Yerry Mina’s goal forced extra time. England didn’t deserve it, but they had to learn to live with it. Danny Murphy had to learn to not count his chickens too early.
Extra time went by without any real chances for either side, and then, the dreaded penalty shootout. You all know England’s record with these. But they went and did it.
Eric Dier scored the winner, and a nation is in disbelief. It is actually still going to come home.