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"It's been a long season, but you play in a World Cup semi-final once in a lifetime and there's no point giving up now".

The squad fly out to the Russian capital, Moscow, on Tuesday afternoon for their first World Cup semi-final in 28 years.

There had been suggestions that Southgate might bring in either Eric Dier or Fabian Delph to sit alongside Henderson, but the Daily Mirror report England will stick with the adventurous approach that has served them so well.

But neither side are in a mood for nostalgia or using the past as motivation.

"We don't really care about who we play or who are the favourites". As we regroup, he turns to me and says, "right that's enough, time to lift the tempo, let's get about them".

"What they did was impressive but we want to keep writing our own history and enjoy what we are doing which is very positive", he added.

This trend has powered the rise of teams that traditionally do not do well in World Cups.

Croatia, who became independent in the early 1990s, have reached the World Cup last four once before, in their debut World Cup appearance in 1998.

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Croatia topped their World Cup group in Russian Federation with three wins out of three games, scoring seven goals and conceding just one.

England finished second in their group, having lost their final group match to Belgium.

"England are looking strong as a team and have scored a lot of goals from set-pieces".

England's 11 goals so far are equal to the country's record of most goals at a single World Cup set back in 1966, when they won the title.

There were some injury concerns over Jordan Henderson and Jordan Pickford but both have been passed fit to play.

England progressed to the last four of football's flagship tournament for the first time since 1990 with a 2-0 win over Sweden on Saturday while Croatia advanced by overcoming hosts Russian Federation on penalties.

"We experienced the extra time and penalties (against Colombia) and we know the physical and emotional outcome of that", he said.

Croatia, however, may not have the luxury of naming an unchanged side, with several key players missing training on Monday. Their first encounter, in 1996, ended in a goalless draw.

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Goalkeeper Danijel Subasic tweaked an existing hamstring problem in the closing stages of Croatia's win over Russian Federation, though played on regardless and even made a crucial stop in the penalty shootout.

The Liverpool midfielder was taken off five minutes from the end of the last-eight victory over Sweden at the weekend due to a tight hamstring.

But he is certainly well aware of the threat that Croatia pose in the centre of the field.

However, Kane's partner in attack, Raheem Sterling, has pace to burn and England's totem will be on hand to benefit if that causes problems for the Croatians.

"They're very risky on set-pieces".

"We watched the game today and saw how good they are from dead-ball situations", captain Luka Modric said.

The Three Lions captain leads the scoring charts in Russian Federation with six goals from just four matches, and is bet365's 10/3 (4.33) favourite to break the deadlock at the Luzhniki Stadium.

Monaco goalkeeper Subasic saved three penalties in Croatia's shootout win over Denmark in the round of 16, and another in the quarter-finals as the Vatreni dramatically ousted hosts Russian Federation on penalties.

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