Semi final joy has England fans dreaming

Maybe it really IS coming home!

Saturday, 7th July 2018, 10:39 pm
Updated Monday, 16th July 2018, 4:52 pm
Picture by Julian Brown 07/07/18 Luke Young (10) Crowds watch the World Cup Quarter Final England v Sweden at Bradleys Sports Bar, AFC Fylde, Kirkham

Football fans in and around the Fylde coast and Preston are starting to believe England can win the World Cup after Gareth Southgate’s men beat Sweden to reach the tournament’s semi-finals.

It is the first time England have reached that stage in this tournament since 1990, beyond memory for many younger fans.

Supporters nearly blew the roof off Bradleys Sports Bar at AFC Fyle in Wesham when the Three Lions scored the goals which gave England a 2-0 win.

Picture by Julian Brown 07/07/18 Crowds watch the World Cup Quarter Final England v Sweden at Bradleys Sports Bar, AFC Fylde, Kirkham

They roared in delight when Harry Maguire powered home an unstoppable header from a corner after 30 minutes and when Deli Ali headed home the second after 58 minutes.

There were two scary moments, when Jordan Pickford made a couple of extraordinary saves to deny the Swedes, but unlike so many other England games, fans did not have to go through the wringer and do it the hard way.

In fact, it seemed relatively straightforward and the Three Lions fans ended the match feeling bullish, despite shouting at the screen when Rahim Sterling dawdled in front of goal.

Dave Awde, a 30 year old Preston fan, of Kirkham, said: “I can’t remember a time when England were good enough to reach a semi-final, this is amazing.

“I was too young to remember Italia 90 so this is a first for me in the World Cup.”

Lindsay Robinson, 66, of Foxwood Chase, Westby, said: “Can we win it? Absolutely!

“I was 14 when we won the World Cup, I was living in a pub in Maghull with my family and I remember it well.

“We’ve got every chance to repeat that.”

His wife Elizabeth added: “Yes, we can win it!”

Paul Cross, 46, of Newton with Scales , was upbeat too.

He said: “We can beat either Russia or Croatia and reach the final, and I feel confident.

“I was expecting a tough game but we did really well against them.

“This is massive for the country, we need something positive at the moment and the World Cup brings everyone together, including fans of different football clubs.”

Hadley Heald, 40, of Garstang Road South, Wesham, said “ “That was awesome. I have to mention Pickford, he was our best player. He didn’t have much to do, but when he did, he did the job so well.”

Steve Lawrence, 40, of Bramble Close, Wesham, said: “This is our time!”

Martin Dodgson, 32, of The Close, Kirkham, said: “I was expecting two-one or maybe one-nil bur we looked comfortable.”

So England’s World Cup adventure rolls on.

More of the same on Wednesday would please fans even more!