Wednesday 29 January 2020

England’s World Cup Diary – Friday, July 13

Preparations in full swing for third-place play-off against Belgium.

England continue their preparations for their final World Cup match (Owen Humphreys/PA)
England continue their preparations for their final World Cup match (Owen Humphreys/PA)

By Press Association Sport staff

England face Belgium on Saturday in the third-place play-off at the 2018 World Cup – with manager Gareth Southgate keen to end their Russian adventure with a bang.

The Three Lions came close to a first World Cup final since 1966 but lost their semi-final to Croatia in extra-time on Wednesday night.

Many people have since questioned the need to play off against their fellow beaten semi-finalists in Saint Petersburg but Southgate is keen to seal victory before returning home.

“I have got to say the players are incredible, they are an absolute pleasure to work with,” Southgate said.

“Their energy this morning, their desire to finish the tournament well… we feel we owe it as much to ourselves as our public and our nation.

“We have brought a lot of pride but we want to finish the tournament well. We want to keep those standards right to the end.”

All 23 members of the squad trained on the eve of the clash but Southgate confirmed there will be some changes to his side as a number of players are battling against injury and illness.

Picture of the day

England’s full 23-man squad trained in Repino ahead of Saturday’s third-place play-off against Belgium (Dmitri Lovetsky/AP)

Quote of the day

We have high motivation to perform, we have the chance to win a medal at a World Cup which only one other English team has ever done Gareth Southgate

Video of the day

Daily social

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by JLingz�� (@jesselingard) on

What’s on tomorrow?

England’s World Cup campaign comes to an end at the Krestovsky Stadium in Saint Petersburg as they take on Belgium to determine who will finish third.

Three Lions Throwback

England’s 2018 World Cup adventure began in September 2016 with Adam Lallana’s last-gasp winner in a qualifier against Slovakia (Nick Potts/PA)

PA Media

The Left Wing: Ireland's Six Nations target, a French revival and Ian Madigan's future

Editor's Choice

Also in Sport