Yesterday was certainly an emotional night for all of England. After all the chants and all the hopes and wishes, it turned out that football would not be coming home this World Cup. The England team fell just short. After battling their way through and finally making it through to the semi-finals, they fell just short. Close, but not quite close enough.
To many of us it may seem silly to cry over football, but England’s tears were understood considering just how close within their grasp this win was. The team did it’s country proud by reaching as far as they did, but the night ended up belonging to Croatia.
England’s Triumphant Start
England may have thought that scoring in less than 5 minutes into the game, they had secured a quick and painless game. In truth, they only prolonged it. As the game went on, it became clear that it was shifting away from them and closer to Croatia.
Harry Maguire went close with headers from corners twice, Alli helped set up Lingard (who could have done a lot better from the edge of the box). Then we had Lingard finding Kane, on the brink of offside, but the shot merely hit the post before hitting Subasic and flying away.
Energy Lost/Croatia’s Battle
While all of these close calls were going on, Croatia was picking up the pace and gaining power. Once the second half kicked off, Croatia did what it could to challenge England’s hold. It was clear that they did not expect Croatia to respond to their challenge. They certainly didn’t expect them to respond so well that they would win…
Slowly but surely, Croatia began to rise to the occasion. With each pass, with every move they got better and better. Soon it was clear that England could no longer run them off the pitch. Perisic would soon make that very clear to England with his goal.
In the end, it was Mario Mandzukic who sent it home. He could see the signs. He knew England’s team was tired and he knew it was his moment to attack. England’s team eventually spent the last 10 minutes lost and disillusioned. The game was clearly over, to the unfortunate heartbreak of many…
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By: Noha Abuhadra