England were knocked out of the World Cup on Wednesday night as they lost 2-1 to Croatia in extra-time.
A goal from Mario Mandzukic in extra-time secured the win for Croatia, who equalised in the 68th minute through Ivan Perisic.
Kieran Trippier handed England the lead after five minutes, with a superb free-kick, but Gareth Southgate’s men then sat back and let Croatia dominate the game and create chances.
Here are four things we learned from the game…
The warning signs were there...
Ashley Young was England’s worst player at the World Cup, comfortably.
The converted winger consistently mistimed challenges and misplaced passes in the previous games, and tonight was no different.
He failed to close down any crosses and let the Croatia wide men have all the space in the world to pepper England’s box with crosses, with one of them turning into the equaliser.
Danny Rose should have started the game.
Kane can't do it on his own
Too much of the goalscoring pressure was placed on Harry Kane’s shoulders.
He had a poor game, but there wasn’t much he could do with little to no support.
England looked scared to play the ball forward, even when they were 2-1 down in extra-time…
Southgate isn't perfect
Southgate has been heavily praised, and rightly so, throughout the tournament.
However, he got it wrong this time. His decision to stick with Young at LWB and to take Raheem Sterling off backfired massively.
All this will be good for his development as a manager, though.
England miss creativity in midfield
All night England lacked a midfielder to pick up pockets of space and create chances going forward. Lingard and Alli failed to do that.
England need one to step up going into the European Championships in 2020…