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England break shootout curse to knock out Colombia

COLOMBIA 1: (Mina 93′)
ENGLAND 1 : (Kane 54′)

England won 4-3 on penalties

By Jesse Kemp-Segedin

England has lifted its penalty shootout curse to book a quarter-final spot against Sweden after defeating Colombia 4-3 on penalties in a fiery round-of-16 encounter.

Harry Kane put the Three Lions ahead with a 57th minute penalty after being grappled to the ground by Carlos Sanchez.

The England captain stepped up and coolly dispatched the spot kick down the middle as Colombian goalkeeper David Ospina dived away to his right.

England was seconds away from the quarter-finals when Yerry Mina put the celebrations on hold.

The Colombian centre-back rose above his markers to head home the corner in the 94th minute.

England almost paid dearly by choosing to sit back and defend in the final 15 minutes, with Colombia allowed much more freedom on the ball which led to their equalising goal.

The match was cagey from the start with both sides probing each other’s defence without committing too many players forward.

England looked to rely on their strength at set pieces and they had opportunities with a corner count of 7-1 in their favour, while Colombia tried to find openings with intricate passing and movement.

The match was littered with poor discipline with the Colombians receiving six yellow cards to England’s two – four of them coming in a 12-minute period at the start of the second half.

Colombia’s Wilmar Barrios was lucky to escape with only a yellow after he appeared to make contact with Jordan Henderson using his head while jostling in a wall during a free kick.

In the end, a scoreless extra-time period meant it came down to England’s nemesis – a World Cup penalty shootout – having lost their previous three in 1990, 1998 and 2006.

They seemed to be headed for elimination once again when Jordan Henderson’s effort was saved by David Ospina to give Colombia a 3-2 advantage.

But Mateus Uribe struck his spot kick against the crossbar and Kieran Trippier scored next to bring England level at 3-3.

England keeper Jordan Pickford then pulled off a miraculous save with an outstretched left hand as he dived to his right to deny Carlos Bacca.

It handed Eric Dier the chance to seal victory and he didn’t disappoint, sending English fans into jubilation with a sharp penalty into the bottom left of Ospina’s goal.

England’s next opponents will be the Swedes who booked their quarter-final spot with a hard-fought 1-0 victory over Switzerland.

Team Line-ups

Colombia: 1 Ospina (GK), 4 Arias (116′), 5 Barrios, 6 Sanchez (79), 9 Falcao (C), 11 Juan Cuadrado, 13 Y Mina, 16 Lerma (62′), 17 Mojica, 20 J. Quintero (88′), 23 Sanchez
Substitutes: 2 Zapata (116′) , 3 Murillo, 7 Bacca (62′), 8 Aguilar T, 12 Vargas (GK), 14 Muriel (88′), 15 Uribe (79′), 18 Diaz, 21 Izquierdo, 22 Jose Cuadrado (GK), 10 Rodriguez, Borjja

England: 1 Pickford (GK), 2 Walker (113′), 5 Stones, 6 Maguire, 7 Lingard, 8 Henderson, 9 Kane (C), 10 Sterling (88′), 12 Trippier, 18 Young (102′), 20 Dele (81′)
Substitutes: 3 Rose (102′), 4 Dier (81′), 11 Vardy (88′), 13 Butland (GK), 14 Welbeck, 15 Cahill, 16 Jones, 19 Rashford (113′), 21 Loftus-Cheek, 22 Alexander-Arnold, 23 Pope (GK), 17 Delph

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