Published: Fri, July 13, 2018
Sport | By Stuart Potter

Southgate acknowledges England players are in a different era

Southgate acknowledges England players are in a different era

Raheem Sterling paid tribute to England's fans after helping the team reach a "dream" World Cup semi-final.

"It's not the same if you play 90 minutes twice and 120 minutes twice, but I believe we've had ample time to recover and we're professional enough to know who needs what in terms of recovery", he said.

A bit like catchup TV in a way, VAR (Video Assisted Referee) was introduced for the first time for the 2018 World Cup in Russian Federation.

Southgate and his players trained at their base in Repino on Tuesday morning before heading for Moscow and the Luzhniki Stadium where their fate will be decided on Wednesday evening.

"At the beginning we were working together with the lads and trying to sell them the vision of what's possible, what we're looking to achieve in the long term".

In addition to touching on England's preparations for the nation's biggest game in almost three decades, Southgate took the time to praise World Cup hosts Russian Federation.

Pogba speaks on France vs Croatia match
He added, " Croatia came from a goal down against England on Wednesday to win 2-1 in extra time". It is a World Cup showpiece and we must play to win, as always with England .

And Martinez said there had been no secret to success, just the following of a process as team and manager got to know one another's individual talents during his time in charge. "They work hard for each other and there are no big superstars".

"Seeing the fans back home on social media...we love the support off the fans and we just want to do as well as we can as team and hopefully do them proud", he added.

On its website, the blood cancer research charity asked fans to "show your support for Gareth Southgate and the boys ahead of Wednesday's semi-final showdown - and help give blood cancer the boot".

Southgate's mantra of "playing with freedom" certainly appears to have been drawn from that bitter experience where England looked frozen by fear.

"It was a brilliant tournament, fantastic memories of the whole tournament, I remember videoing every game to watch back. We're not working much now so you can imagine what it will be like if we win". "So, they should - we've got trust in them doing that". Hendo (Jordan Henderson) was another one who was feeling tightness in his hamstring, which was why we made the change.

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