Tuesday, 25 September, 2018

Raheem Sterling thanks England fans after reaching 'dream' World Cup semi-final

Gareth Southgate REUTERSGareth Southgate admits the team as a group have been through so much already
Cassandra Castillo | 11 July, 2018, 08:28

Sterling is yet to net a goal in the World Cup despite being in the team in four matches out of five and has also been missing goal-scoring opportunities in the tournament on a regular basis. Beckham and Sir Geoff Hurst, though, defended Sterling's displays after the quarter-final win against Sweden.

So fierce has some of this criticism been that ex-England and Manchester United duo David Beckham and Gary Neville have rallied to support the Manchester City star and they now have an ally in Dalic. "OK, we didn't have the cherry on the cake, the goal, where all of a sudden you're a hero, but it was a brilliant performance".

Beckham said on Instagram: "It's wrong".

Eric Dier has been astonished by Raheem Sterling's focus and attitude despite negative coverage in sections of the British media ahead of and during the World Cup. Every player deserves to be applauded.

"I think Raheem has been fundamental to the way we have played - his movement, the positions he takes up, his pressing of the ball, his work rate for the team, the winning of free-kicks, the winning of corners, his speed to stretch teams", Southgate told the ITV World Cup podcast.

Meanwhile, ignoring all the abuses and taunts, Sterling has applauded the support of English fans in Russian Federation.

More news: Fans welcome Brazil team with stones after crashing out of World Cup

Sterling and co face Croatia on Wednesday evening, with the victor facing either France or Belgium in the final on Sunday in what is now an all-European affair, the third time this will have happened in four tournaments.

"The way Raheem's handled everything from when we met up until now has been incredible", said Dier.

"Until football is finished I will try and stay in as much as I can, watch TV and no one can say nothing".

"Our league is not so strong but if we had England's money, who knows where we would be". And to outdo the mighty Croatians, the Three Lions will certainly need their number 10 to perform his best.

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