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Football isn’t coming home but England fans are proud of Gareth Southgate’s team


This was one of those strange nights that could have lived forever but will inevitably join the long list of England’s “what ifs?”

I got to see it because my best friend lives here and entered the FIFA ballot months and months ago.

Incredibly we got two tickets for the Luzhniki Stadium on 11 July.

We were convinced we’d be watching Germany or Brazil. It turned out to be England and how the travelling support roared them on.

Security on the way in was super tight, but once inside the ground the atmosphere was buzzing.

England fans show support for the team after their semi-final loss
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England fans stayed well after the final whistle to voice their support

England fans hadn’t really travelled in huge numbers for the previous games, but they were here in force this time.

The famous Three Lions song blasted out around the stadium.

I saw one guy with a homemade banner that read “Keep calm, it’s NOT coming home!”

He was joking, but nobody was laughing. In the end, he was right.

Gareth Southgate applauds England supporters at Moscow's Luzhniki Stadium
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Gareth Southgate’s applauded fans after the match

England fans on the way out after the 2-1 extra-time defeat told me they were proud of this young squad.

Others said they had “thrown it away”, just like the lyric from that song.

England lasted longer here than Argentina, Brazil, Germany, Spain and Portugal.

They can take heart from all the positives here, but in the end the guy with the banner was spot on in his prediction.

Football isn’t coming home. England are.



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