Wednesday 21 November 2018

Low-key return home planned for World Cup semi-finalists England

The Three Lions face Belgium in the third-place play-off on Saturday.

No big celebrations are planned for the England squad’s return home (Owen Humphreys/PA)
No big celebrations are planned for the England squad’s return home (Owen Humphreys/PA)

By Simon Peach, Press Association Chief Football Writer, St Petersburg

England’s World Cup semi-finalists are planning a low-key return from Russia on Sunday.

Gareth Southgate’s young squad ripped up the script to reach the tournament’s last four for the first time since 1990, losing to Croatia after extra time in Moscow on Wednesday evening.

But their return will be a much quieter affair than the one that greeted Sir Bobby Robson’s side after their heroics in Italy.

England are due to fly from St Petersburg to Birmingham on Sunday – the day after facing Belgium in the third-place play-off – and the Football Association has confirmed that there will be no public access for fans, given airport security restrictions.

There are also no public celebrations planned despite the Three Lions’ impressive achievements in Russia, which could yet see them become the most successful team since the 1966 champions.

Press Association

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