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Pickford: More to come from England

Goalkeeper’s comments after heartbreaking semi-final loss

England v Croatia: Semi Final - 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Photo by Matthias Hangst/Getty Images

A young England side lost to a patient Croatia team yesterday as the unlikely dreams of football coming home were unfortunately extinguished.

Still, the Three Lions have a lot to be proud of considering they were not expected to get this far by even the most optimistic of supporters.

After the gut-wrenching loss to the experience of Croatia’s golden generation though, Everton goalkeeper Jordan Pickford is looking forward to England’s own era as well.

“We have to show pride and passion which we have. Look at the fans tonight, there was a lump in my throat watching the fans applaud us at the end.

“I feel that as a nation we have progressed and hopefully there is more to come in the future.”

Despite going ahead early in the game and then holding on to that lead for well over an hour, England finally relented to the barrage of crosses that allowed their opponents back into the game and then to snatch a win.

“It was an experience for us and one we wanted to win. Maybe we went ahead too early, we needed that next goal to kill off the tie and we had some good chances but never put them away.

“I feel like if we got that goal before half-time or in the first 15 of the second half we might have had that opportunity to win the game.

“A team like Croatia, we know their threats going forward, they have some quality players. We weathered some storms.”

Pickford didn’t have much to add about the two goals conceded -

“I’m always trying to help the team and unfortunately it was a one-on-one [for the winner by Mandzukic] and maybe a high foot [by Perisic on Walker].

”But you never know. You can’t look at it like that. You’ve just got to look forward now and show pride and show passion, which we have.”