Published: Sun, July 08, 2018
Life&Culture | By Sue Mclaughlin

England 'absolutely good enough' to win World Cup says Sweden's Janne Andersson

Harry Maguire and Dele Alli scored with headers to advance England to the penultimate stage where they will face either Croatia or host nation Russian Federation.

England advanced to their first FIFA World Cup™ semi-final since Italy 1990 with a 2-0 win over Sweden thanks to a pair of headed goals by Harry Maguire and Dele.

They were set on their way when Maguire rose imperiously to head home from a corner and Alli added the killer blow after the break as England showed they are not entirely dependent on the tournament's leading scorer Harry Kane for goals.

Jordan Pickford made excellent saves to deny Marcus Berg, twice, and Viktor Claesson after the break but England generally looked the more risky side and were rewarded when Alli headed the second from a Jesse Lingard cross in the 59th minute.

As the World Cup continues we may have to witness other celebratory Fortnite moves, so try your best to keep that old saying in mind: Don't hate the player, hate the dances inspired by video games.

England achieved something David Beckham's generation never managed: It reached the semifinals of the World Cup.

Sweden last reached the World Cup semifinals in 1994, and ended up finishing third.

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They have met 23 times with seven wins apiece while nine meetings have been drawn. "We knew set plays would be key", Maguire said. England will play again in the semifinals on Wednesday, July 11.

England sent in some crosses after but those signs of life were fleeting as Sweden's resolute team shape strangled a side sloppy in possession.

Sweden rallied in a bid to claw themselves back into the game, introducing former Blue John Guidetti from the bench, but the Scandinavians found Pickford and the England defence in inspired form. Sterling in particular proved a bright spark with his movement and pressing, and was unfortunate not to open his account - thwarted by goalkeeper Robin Olsen.

Sterling got hold of the loose ball but his shot was deflected over.Sterling's movement was very good, though, causing Sweden's slow defense problems throughout.

Virtually from the kickoff, Sweden sent a long pass forward to tall striker Ola Toivonen and looked for a flick-on.

"Yes, I definitely believe they are", Andersson responded when asked if England were good enough to win the tournament.

The Three Lions will face Croatia at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow after the World Cup hosts crashed out. We know it's no fun to get knocked out of the World Cup.

"I don't think anything went wrong". "Being both British and Swedish, we were on the edge of our seats during the game and we would like to say 'Grattis!' [congratulations in Swedish] to the England team for getting through to the semi-finals". "We worked on that in training so credit to the staff".

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