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England flirted with disaster before pulling off a 4-3 victory over Colombia in the World Cup round of 16 in Moscow.
The win allowed England to move into the quarterfinal round for the first time since 2006. The Three Lions is set to take on a battle-tested Sweden team in the next phase.
Strong Second Half For England
The Three Lions controlled the pace early in the second half thanks to the mobility of Harry Kane who made every effort to breach the Colombian defense. Kane got a perfect opportunity when he forced a foul from Carlos Sanchez after initiating the swim move.
Kane delivered the penalty right down the middle in the 58th-minute to break the silence and put the Three Lions on the scoreboard 1-0. England had a chance to double their lead when Jesse Lingard initiated a 2-on-1 inside the box but his pass was cleared out by a Colombian defender for a corner.
Colombia Making A Late Run
Just when England was ready to celebrate, the Colombians came roaring back. Carlos Bacca created a three-on-two counterattack after stealing the ball from Kyle Walker in the midfield.
Nonetheless, teammate Juan Cuadrado failed to capitalize the opportunity after his shot from 12 yards out was off target. Radamel Falcao had another chance to even things up in the 87th-minute but his attempt was easily cleared out by Jordan Pickford.
A few minutes later, Barcelona defender Yerry Mina stepped into occasion as he converted a brilliant header in stoppage time to knot the game at 1-apiece. It also marked Mina’s third goal in this year’s World Cup.
England tried to make up for their mistake late in extra time when Jordan Henderson got a clear shot on goal but his shot just hit past the post for a goal kick. Eric Dier had one last chance to give the Three Lions the win but his corner was just over the bar.
Pulsating Penalty Shootout
Falcao and Kane all found the back of the net in the shoot-out for their respective teams to knot the count at 1-all. Cuadrado scored thereafter before Marcus Rashford fired a shot over the outstretched arms of David Ospina to keep things level.
Colombia had a real chance of walking out the victors when Luis Muriel gave them a 3-2 lead and Ospina saved the shot of Henderson. However, a goal from England’s Kieran Trippier and penalty miss from Colombian booters Mateus Uribe and Bacca ruined the chances of the South Americans.
Dier scored the game-winning penalty in the next sequence as he outsmarted Ospina who got a hand on the ball but was unable to keep it out. It was also a sweet victory for England who was eliminated in 1990, 1998, and 2006 World Cups on penalties.
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