25.11.2022
John Stones insists England’s don’t need a five-man defence against the top teams at the World Cup

Can one good result and performance wipe away six months of struggle all by itself? It seems we are about to find out.

There was a moment, when England trailed 2-0 to Germany at Wembley in September, when it was tempting to wonder if the national team would ever play well again.

They recovered to draw that game 3-3, but still there was enough in it to indicate trouble for England when they reached Qatar a matter of weeks later.

Now, after a 6-2 stroll against Iran in their opening game in Group B, the six games without a win that preceded it already seem like a distant memory.

On Friday night against USA, however, will be a game that asks England different questions. Iran were surprisingly meek on Monday, but the Americans will not be.

If England have not quite shaken off the uncertainty that characterised their football in the lead-up to this World Cup, then this might be the night when it shows itself again.

‘We came into this tournament with intent and we played well,’ said manager Gareth Southgate on Thursday. ‘We exploited the opponent on the day but the next two games are going to be completely different.

‘Now we play a team who are on one point. They have high motivation playing against England, they play in a way that is different from Iran.

‘They are going to test more our ability to deal with pressure on the ball and they are going to be harder to break down because of that. We have to make sure we have the answers to those questions.’

After placing his preference to play three central defenders to one side for the Iran game, Southgate is expected to play a back four again this evening at the remote Al Bayt stadium north of Doha.

The chances are this will ask more questions of central pairing Harry Maguire and John Stones than were posed on Monday.

Stones, the Manchester City defender, spoke about this on Thursday as he sat down to talk at England’s training ground.

There is a theory that the reason Southgate chooses to play three at the back against the better teams is to offer some protection to Maguire, who has endured poor club form for as long as anybody can remember.

But asked if he and his partner would need that kind of security blanket against a team such as Brazil or France in the later stages, Stones said: ‘Personally, no, but if we come up against those teams it would be down to the manager and then down to us to adapt to a new system.

‘It’s good that we are versatile and able to go from a four to a five. In the Euros two summers ago we even switched systems within games and did it well.’

All footballers need confidence, whatever their level. From that perspective, the result against Iran served a priceless purpose. ‘There was definitely a click, or a desire to put things right,’ nodded Stones.

‘We had to come out of a bad period. I have said it before, but sometimes they can be beneficial for us as players and as a team. It is not easy to go through those times, but if we have them we will come out the other side stronger and better.’

Maguire’s performance in the opening game went some way to quietening the talk about the Manchester United man’s selection. His defending was impeccable and he also hit the bar with a header when the game was goalless.

While recognising that the USA will provide a sterner test this evening, Stones spoke glowingly about his friend and team-mate.

He added: ‘Harry hasn’t played much at his club but to come in and play like he did, well I don’t think anyone saw a bit of rust on him.

‘That’s great credit to him and I’m so happy for him. For all of us to start off well and get that rhythm back and make massive strides from the last four games, which we weren’t happy with — to put that to bed and get our standards back on the biggest stage is good for us going forward.’

America were the better side against Wales in their opening game. That they did not win propels manager Gregg Berhalter and his players into this fixture with a sense of purpose and need.

In the States, failure to qualify from this group would badly dent a sense of esteem that has been slowly growing across the Atlantic.

‘We have to press the reset button and find the same psychology and determination we had before the first game,’ said Southgate. ‘The risk is thinking this will be easy. The aim is to qualify and if that takes three games that’s OK.’

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  • 1 час, 11 минут назад 06.12.2022Sport
    Harry Kane tries to reassure his England teammates after Raheem Sterling’s World Cup exit

    England captain Harry Kane has reportedly spoke to his Three Lions teammates to calm nerves surrounding the safety of families and loved ones back home after Raheem Sterling’s London property was burgled.

    Sterling was forced to miss England’s last-16 World Cup victory over Senegal on Sunday after the star attacker unexpectedly headed back to the United Kingdom to comfort his family after their robbery ordeal.

    Concerned England supporters have reportedly boosted their home security while away on international duty in Qatar, while Spurs striker Kane has attempted to ease fears inside the dressing room according to the Mirror.

    Sterling’s partner Paige Milan and his children were out of the property at the time that thugs broke in and sought to cash-in on the England forward’s jewellery collection after stealing a luxury watch and more high-value items from his £6million London home.

    Kane is reportedly keen to fulfil his duties of being the national team skipper by attempting to raise moral inside the dressing room following Sterling’s sudden departure.

    England stars were rightly concerned about the safety of their own families back home, with a source telling of Kane’s efforts to reassure colleagues.

    ‘Harry takes his captain’s duties as seriously off the field as on.

    ‘He knows players’ families are really shaken up. It is a huge worry for the players as well.’

    ‘Harry knows how worried the players are,

    ‘He sees it as his job as skipper to keep morale and focus everyone on the France match. He reassured them. He wants Raheem to take as long as he needs.

    England will be hoping to have Sterling back in time for their mouth-watering quarter-final clash against France on Saturday.

    Gareth Southgate will be hoping to become the first England manager to lead the nation to successive World Cup semi-finals as the Three Lions attempt to lift the World Cup for just the second time in the country’s history.

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  • 1 час, 11 минут назад 06.12.2022Sport
    Raheem Sterling ‘won’t return to England’s World Cup camp until his family is safe’ after burglary

    Raheem Sterling will not return to England’s World Cup camp until his family are safe, and has told friends that he needs to be ‘100 per cent sure’ before flying back to Qatar.

    The star has been left ‘shaken’ following the burglary at his £6million mansion, with neighbours yesterday claiming it was an ‘inside job’ by contractors, as he is said to be the fourth Chelsea player targeted by an organised gang.

    Thieves broke into the father of three’s £6million gated home before making off with a stash of watches and jewellery – prompting the shocked star to race home from Qatar to be with his family.

    Police were contacted around 9pm on Saturday, December 3 after Sterling’s partner Paige returned to find ‘a number of items including jewellery and watches’ had been stolen.

    A number of Sterling’s England teammates are understood to now be reviewing their own security in light of the frightening incident.

    The footballer, 27, hopes to return to Qatar for England’s quarter final match against France on Saturday — but will only do so if he feels his family are safe in their Surrey home.

    ‘Raheem has told everyone, “There is no way I’m going anywhere unless I’m 100 per cent sure that my family can be kept safe”. He is security conscious and part of the reason they moved into the property was that it is on a very exclusive estate, with regular security patrols,’ a source told The Sun.

    ‘Despite this, he has still managed to be targeted, which is very upsetting for Raheem and Paige. They have just moved back to London and want to feel safe.’

    A spokesman for Sterling said that ‘his focus is on being at home and supporting his family,’ they told The Mirror.

    Gareth Southgate will not put pressure on Sterling to rejoin the England squad after he flew home due to deal with the police investigation over the next 48 hours.

    England staff are in touch with Sterling but Chelsea are taking a lead role while he is in England.

    Yesterday a neighbour told MailOnline that they were convinced Sterling’s break-in was an ‘inside job’ as she revealed how a string of builders and removal vans had been at the house.

    She said: ‘I came back from an overnight flight on Saturday night just after 9pm and the police were outside. The estate WhatsApp group lit up and we all knew very quick it was a break-in and thankfully no one was hurt.

    ‘I’ve only seen him once walking his dogs, but I’ve seen the family and they are very young. I do feel desperately sorry for them as they have only just moved in.

    ‘It’s a pittance a month for the security and all the people on the chat know that Raheem’s family haven’t been signed up to the security.

    ‘They had dozens of removals vans, builders and electricians trooping in and out a few weeks ago and they all knew the access codes.

    ‘I’m sure it’s an inside job and the codes have been passed around because people would have been talking. How else would anyone know he was there?’

    Meanwhile, England defender Maguire spoke of his frustration over the incident.

    He said: ‘We’re out here giving everything and at home people are attacking us.

    ‘It is really disappointing to hear that Raheem has had to go home and get things done. We haven’t had time to talk to him, because our full focus was on the match.

    ‘The match could have gone differently because we lost Raheem. It is disappointing to lose him because of something out of our hands. We are all here for him.

    ‘It is extremely disappointing to hear that we are out here and give absolutely everything to our country, and then there are people at home attacking us.’

    A source close to the team said that captain Harry Kane is trying to keep the team’s morale up following the burglary.

    ‘Harry knows the players’ families are really shaken up by what has happened and that is a worry for the players themselves,’ they told The Sun.

    ‘Harry takes his captain’s duties as seriously off the field as on,’ another source told The Mirror.

    Investigators are now working to determine when a burglary reported at the home of England forward Raheem Sterling took place and say no witnesses have come forward at this stage to say armed suspects or threats of violence were involved.

    The 27-year-old Chelsea star was given leave to return to the UK from England’s World Cup camp in Qatar after he learned about the burglary.

    Sources close to Sterling had indicated on Sunday that armed intruders had broken into Sterling’s home while his family were inside, but an updated statement issued by Surrey Police this afternoon said the occupants of the house were not present during the burglary and that there was no evidence at this point of armed intruders or threats of violence being involved.

    ‘We are currently investigating a report of a burglary at an address in Oxshott, Leatherhead,’ the statement read.

    ‘On Saturday, December 3 the occupants returned to the address after arriving home from an international trip.

    ‘They contacted police just before 9pm to report a number of items of jewellery, including watches, had been stolen. Officers attended the address later that night and returned to speak to the occupants this morning.

    ‘At this time it remains unclear on which date the property was stolen and establishing this forms a key part of our investigation.

    ‘Enquiries into the full circumstances remain ongoing and officers will look at all available evidence including any CCTV opportunities.

    ‘We are aware of media reports stating there were armed suspects involved, however, at this time, we would reassure our communities that no witnesses have come forward to this effect and there are no reports of any threats of violence linked to this incident. Anyone with information should contact police directly if they have not already been spoken to.

    ‘No arrests have been made at this time.’

    The news of the break-in led to Sterling being unavailable for Sunday night’s 3-0 victory over Senegal, which has taken England into the World Cup quarter-finals.

    It is not yet clear whether the 27-year-old will return for Saturday’s match against France, with England boss Gareth Southgate admitting he and everyone else would have to ‘wait and see’ regarding Sterling’s availability.

    Southgate was asked about Sterling in the press conference following Sunday’s win over Senegal.

    ‘Raheem, as the FA statement says, is having to deal with a family situation, so he’s going back to England,’ he said.

    ‘We’ve got to give him time to try to resolve that or be there for his family. That’s the most important thing at this time, so we’re going to give him that space.

    ‘It didn’t impact team selection. I spent a lot of time with Raheem this morning, but you know you have days where events happen and you have to deal with them.

    ‘He’s on his way home and, yeah, we’re obviously mindful of him being allowed space and (having) privacy respected, so we don’t want to talk in too much detail.

    ‘Of course it’s not ideal for the group ahead of a big game, but it pales into insignificance – the individual is more important than the group in those moments.

    ‘So, I needed to look after the situation and then I had to pass it on to others to deal with this afternoon in order to get him home.’

    The Football Association offered extensive security guidance to players before leaving for Qatar and has an experienced security team on hand to advise and provide support as and when needed.

    Sterling is among dozens of top-flight footballers who have had their homes targeted by thieves.

    Several Manchester United players have been victims, with Tahith Chong, Victor Lindelof and Jesse Lingard all having break-ins early this year.

    Security experts have warned that footballers’ widely known schedules and obvious wealth increase the risk of their homes being targeted.

    Last month, Stoke City defender Josh Tymon appealed for help after thugs stole ‘everything of value’ from his house in Knutsford, Cheshire, including watches, bags, shoes, jewellery and a Range Rover Sport SVR.

    Liverpool ace Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and his fiancée Perrie Edwards were targeted in September, with a gang bursting into their £3.5million Cheshire property while they were with their 13-year-old son.

    In April, a 31-year-old man was arrested after Chelsea star Reece James had a safe stolen from his house in Surrey. James, 21, said robbers struck in September and made off with his Champions League, Super Cup and Euro 2020 medals.

    In September last year, Chelsea defender Reece James, 22, had his Surrey home targeted by a gang who stole his safe with the Champions League, Euro 2020 and, Super Cup medals inside.

    Two others in the team have been victims of similar crimes, with police investigating for a potential link, The Sun reported.

    In March, Manchester United star Paul Pogba revealed that his house was burgled while his two children were sleeping in their bedroom as he played in the Champions League.

    The medal he received after France won the World Cup in 2018 was stolen, as well as family jewellery.

    His teammate Victor Lindelof also had his home burgled in January while he was playing a game against Brentford.

    Sterling was last targeted in 2018 when he played for Manchester City and lived in Cheshire. But the gang were scared away when the alarm system was activated and left empty-handed.

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  • 3 часа, 11 минут назад 06.12.2022Sport
    LAWRENCE BOOTH’S RATINGS: England have a serious talent in Harry Brook and Ben Stokes is ‘heroic’

    Ben Stokes and England made good on their intentions to force a result against Pakistan with a stunning 74-run victory at Rawalpindi on Monday, thanks to stunning performances from Zak Crawley, Ollie Robinson, Harry Brook and Stokes himself.

    Opener Crawley made 172 runs across two innings to make good on the faith shown in him over the summer, while Brook starred for England with 240 from 181 balls in the Test, including eight sixes.

    With the ball Robinson excelled in conditions that ought not to have suited him and Stokes was his usual inspirational self in every facet of the game, despite not having the best Test of his life according to the figures.

    Here are LAWRENCE BOOTH’S ratings for the first Test in batting order.

    Zak Crawley – 9

    Contributed 172 stylish runs from 159 balls, vindicating England’s decision to stick with him after a difficult summer. Clearly loves batting against Pakistan.

    Ben Duckett – 8

    A first-ball duck in the second innings didn’t remove too much gloss from his century in the first, full of cheeky sweeps in his first Test for six years.

    Added 233 with Crawley in an alliance full of contrasts.

    Ollie Pope – 8.5

    Now averages 41 at No 3, having never batted there before the Stokes/McCullum era.

    A classy century was supplemented by some neat keeping in an emergency after Ben Foakes’s late withdrawal.

    Joe Root – 7.5

    The only one of the top five to miss out on a first-innings century, Root was impishly brilliant while making 73 in the second, even taking guard as a left-hander.

    On and off the field regularly to be sick.

    Harry Brook – 9.5

    Magnificent, even prompting assistant coach Paul Collingwood to label him a ‘powerful Joe Root’.

    Flat pitch or not, haul of 240 from 181 balls with eight sixes was outstanding. England have found a serious talent.

    Ben Stokes – 9

    Who cares if he made 41 and nought, and took just one wicket?

    His belief and passion drove England throughout this astonishing game, and his 11-over spell between lunch and tea was typically inspirational.

    Liam Livingstone – 4

    His Test debut did not go as planned. Out for nine in the first innings, he damaged his knee in the field and was unable to bowl. On his way home today.

    Will Jacks – 7.5

    Only learned he was making his Test debut on the morning of the game, hit a quick 30, then took six first-innings wickets to earn England a lead. He’ll never forget this.

    Ollie Robinson – 9

    A year ago, Robinson would have struggled to get through the last day. Here, he was heroic, in conditions that ought not to have suited him.

    His wickets of Agha Salman and Azhar Ali after tea were crucial.

    Jack Leach – 6.5

    He took three expensive wickets, but will never claim a more memorable one than Naseem Shah, clinching victory as the sun began to set.

    James Anderson – 9

    Second-innings figures of four for 36 from 24 overs on that pitch were simply ridiculous. And that was after being denied the new ball.

    At 40, the old dog keeps learning new tricks.

    Pakistan

    Abdullah Shafique 8, Imam-ul-Haq 8.5, Azhar Ali 7, Babar Azam 8, Saud Shakeel 7, Mohammad Rizwan 6, Agha Salman 7, Naseem Shah 7, Haris Rauf 5, Zahid Mahmood 3, Mohammad Ali 4.

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  • 3 часа, 11 минут назад 06.12.2022Sport
    CHRIS FOY: Eddie Jones believed he’d get it right at the World Cup, but results fell away

    Now the lights have gone out, Eddie Jones will be left with a deep sense of regret about being unable to complete his epic England mission. So near became so far.

    What a ride it has been. Often glorious, eventually frustrating and baffling and declining, but never, ever dull. Jones is set to be sacked after almost exactly seven years in one of rugby’s hottest seats, having turned England back into a thunderous juggernaut, before running out of road.

    Where to start? At the end. This had to happen, but the timing is far from ideal. No organisation can claim that any best-laid plans include a total overhaul nine months out from the biggest tournament in the sport — and barely two months before another important Six Nations campaign.

    Many will say the RFU should have acted sooner and that is what the results would suggest, but they wanted to believe in Jones and his conviction that he could win them the ultimate prize.

    That’s the thing about him; the Australian was, is and always will be a powerful and persuasive character. Right up until he reached the precipice, he was adamant that he knew how to solve myriad problems which had hampered his team and how to drive England towards their global objective. But the evidence kept undermining his once-indisputable arguments.

    Ultimately, there was no escaping the facts for ever. They appear to have caught up with Jones at last. England could only win five of their 12 Tests in 2022. Their last two Six Nations campaigns have returned four victories in 10 matches. They have become also-rans in Europe’s annual showpiece, which caused glaring doubts about what they could achieve next autumn in France.

    A series success in Australia in July briefly eased the pressure, but it ultimately served to paper over so many cracks. England prevailed Down Under with spirit and fight and sheer grafting determination, but without the flourishes to suggest that they were truly building another shiny edifice.

    What happened last month was further proof that progress was still elusive for Jones. He was steadfast in supporting the 10-12 axis of Marcus Smith and Owen Farrell against a backdrop of external doubt, but elsewhere the selection wheel kept spinning.

    England didn’t seem to have established a preferred line-up or a coherent masterplan. They lost to Argentina, thrashed Japan, snatched a draw against the All Blacks with a late rally, then collapsed against South Africa.

    That final setback was the last straw for the RFU hierarchy, whose support for their head coach turned to dust in the face of a rare outpouring of unrest from the Twickenham stands. To hear the loyal hordes booing their team off the field after watching the weakened Boks win 27-13 hit home with the blazers in the posh seats.

    So, they have acted after running out of patience. In doing so, they have finally taken a stand against the official Red Rose party line that it will be alright on the night — the night being when the World Cup comes around.

    England fans had long since grown weary of the argument that Test defeats could be tolerated if the bigger picture was taking shape, partly on the basis that they were paying up to £200 per ticket and partly because the bigger picture was still alarmingly blurred.

    Steve Borthwick is going to have an almighty job on his hands. England need clarity and a sense of direction and the clock is ticking. They are crying out for selection stability, set-piece stability, attacking fluency and a freedom in their play, which has been painfully lacking of late. The salvage operation is a daunting one and time will tell whether the former Red Rose captain is up to it.

    While England have stalled since 2019, Borthwick still has a tough act to follow. When Jones took over from Stuart Lancaster, he immediately oversaw a record run of 18 straight Test wins. He won a Grand Slam at the first attempt and he guided the national team to an unprecedented series whitewash in Australia. There was a new mood of purpose and intent and confidence. The new head coach made England more assertive and they were unstoppable.

    Of course, eventually they did stop winning every game. The return to earth began in Dublin at the end of the 2017 Six Nations and then 2018 was the year when the regime ran into trouble. England lost six matches in a row — including a non-cap clash against the Barbarians at Twickenham — and, for the first time, Jones found himself under pressure.

    That time, he turned the tide. A revamp of his coaching staff paid off as John Mitchell and Scott Wisemantel brought new ideas and impetus. England were also buoyed by the emergence of Tom Curry and Sam Underhill — and the so-called ‘Kamikaze Kids’ were instrumental in their run to the World Cup final in 2019. It ended in tears in Yokohama and, ultimately, that would prove the last great peak of Jones’s tenure.

    While the coaching changes in 2018 had a revitalising impact, there have been too many along the way. It has become known as the ‘churn’ of the Jones regime; with coaches and staff coming and going with worrying frequency.

    They have often struggled with the intensity of the workaholic figurehead. The same could be said of many players who have found the England environment fierce and joyless, although the trusted core have been loyal to the last.

    Those such as Ellis Genge, Maro Itoje, Courtney Lawes and Kyle Sinckler have cause to salute the man who ignited their international careers. But many others have been sacrificed harshly and hurriedly — and not always for reasons which stood up to close scrutiny. Jones has always been single-minded in ignoring any outside clamour for or against certain players or tactics.

    At least he can say he stayed true to what he believed, and his overall record measures up to anyone else who has taken on what is arguably the biggest job in rugby. But the early momentum could not be maintained. England’s struggle for results and identity could no longer be tolerated

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  • 5 часов, 11 минут назад 06.12.2022Sport
    Roy Keane slams ‘DISRESPECTFUL’ Brazil for their dancing celebrations

    Roy Keane savaged Brazil’s free-scoring stars as ‘disrespectful’ as he likened their choreographed dance celebrations to watching Strictly Come Dancing.

    Brazil put on a show in the first half of their last-16 showdown with South Korea, hitting them for four thanks to goals from Vinicius Jnr, Neymar, Richarlison and Lucas Paqueta.

    Following Vinicius’ opener Brazil showed off a series of pre-planned dance routines to mark their goals, something that left Keane aghast come the half-time break.

    ‘Fantastic finish by Vinicius, great start to the game. But I’ve never seen so much dancing,’ fumed ITV pundit Keane

    ‘I can’t believe what I’m watching, I can’t believe what I’m watching, it’s like watching Strictly [Come Dancing].’

    Brazil continued to offer up a variety of moves as the goals flew in, with even manager Tite getting involved as he mimicked Richarlison’s pigeon celebration following the third goal.

    ‘I don’t like this. People say it’s their culture. But I think that’s really disrespecting the opposition,’ Keane furiously continued.

    ‘It’s four goals, and they are doing it every time.

    ‘I don’t mind so much the first jig, it’s the one after that, and the manager getting involved.

    ‘I’m not happy about it. I don’t think it’s good at all.’

    Graeme Souness backed Keane’s verdict and was equally as seething at the constant dancing after goals.

    ‘It’s only a matter of time before someone goes right through one of these Brazilians,’ the Scot said.

    Richarlison’s trademark ‘pigeon’ was one that seemed to cause particular annoyance given he raced over to the sideline and got his manager involved.

    The Tottenham striker’s moves originated from a pop group in Brazil called Os Perseguidores.

    It was when Richarlison moved to Everton from Watford in 2018 that he explained the reasons behind the dance.

    ‘The pigeon dance came from a group from Rio de Janeiro who had a song in around 2012,’ he explained at the time.

    ‘A trend was started when I did the dance at home. Everyone started copying me.’

    As annoyed as Keane and Souness were, Eni Aluko, alongside the grumpy pair on ITV’s punditry panel for the match, totally disagreed and said she ‘loved’ the enthusiasm in the Brazil celebrations.

    ‘I love it, it’s like we are at a Brazilian party,’ Aluko responded.

    ‘South Korea have made it easy for them. Look at this penalty, it’s personality, you can say they aren’t respecting South Korea but Neymar would have done that to most teams.’

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  • 5 часов, 11 минут назад 06.12.2022Sport
    Socceroos given a hero’s welcome as they land back in Australia following historic World Cup run

    A number of Socceroos players returned to Australia on Monday night after their exhilarating World Cup run came to an end against Argentina.

    Marco Tilio, Thomas Deng and Jamie Maclaren landed in Melbourne, while Garang Kuol, Mathew Ryan, Cameron Devlin, Jason Cummings and Andrew Redmayne arrived at Sydney Airport.

    The players were met by friends and families, posing for pictures and signing autographs for legions of fans at both airports.

    Australia were eliminated in the knockout stage on Sunday morning (AEDT) after losing 2-1 to a Lionel Messi-inspired Argentina.

    Trailing by two goals with 15 minutes to go, the Socceroos were handed a lifeline when Enzo Fernandez deflected Craig Goodwin’s effort in his own net.

    They then came inches away from snatching a dramatic late equaliser through Kuol, only for Emiliano Martinez to produce a superb save to deny the 18-year-old.

    ‘We played against one of the best teams and the best players who have played the game,’ Maclaren said.

    ‘So we can hold our heads high and know that it’s the best finish that a Socceroos team has had at a World Cup and now, that’s the standard.’

    Deng struck a similar stone. ‘It was really amazing,’ he said.

    ‘It is a dream come true for me and for many others. This is our first World Cup for a lot of the young boys that are coming in.

    ‘It’s just something we are never going to forget.’

    Australia arrived in Qatar as ranked outsiders in Group D, but rebounded from a 4-1 drubbing against France in the opening game to reach the Round of 16 for the first time since 2006.

    The Socceroos won two games at the World Cup for the first time in their history and kept two clean sheets, after going without conceding just once in their five previous appearances at the tournament combined.

    And their performances in Qatar earned enormous public support back in Australia, with thousands of fans gathering to watch the action in Federation Square in Melbourne throughout the group stages.

    Public screenings were also set up in Sydney and Brisbane for the clash against Argentina, as Graham Arnold’s men looked to become the first Australia team to reach the quarter-finals.

    ‘We were looking back after games and it was crazy, all the scenes we were seeing around Australia,’ Tilio said.

    ‘I think that is the biggest thing that made us push to want more and, overall, we united the nation and that’s what we planned to do.’

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Sport John Stones insists England's don't need a five-man defence against the top teams at the World Cup