England boss Gareth Southgate on a famous victory
PUBLISHED: 22:41 03 July 2018 | UPDATED: 13:47 04 July 2018
England manager Gareth Southgate, like goalkeeper Jordan Pickford, hailed the value of England’s shootout preparation after beating Colombia.
The Three Lions reached the quarter-finals of the World Cup after beating Colombia 4-3 on penalties after the game had finished 1-1 after extra-time.
“They are tough,” said Southgate, who famously missed the penalty that saw England eliminated from Euro 96.
“We talked long and hard about owning the process, they kept calm – great credit to all our staff and the players who’ve taken everything on board, and we got our reward today.
“We looked at individual technique, we looked at how we needed to be as a team. The goalkeeper’s very important in that.”
Southgate also praised the mental strength of his side in the face of provocation from Colombia.
Asked if the opposition’s approach was unexpected, he said: “I don’t know if I ‘didn’t expect it’ but we didn’t rise to it, which was brilliant. A couple of times we lost our cool a little bit but generally speaking we kept our nerve.
“Our fans that were here were brilliant but it was almost an away game, so to deal with all of that was exceptional.
“It’s something the players can always look back on now and draw on as an experience.
“We’ve talked about creating their own stories and creating their own history and we’ve done a little bit of that tonight. We go to a quarter-final, but I don’t want to go home yet.”