Wimbledon may be the most prestigious tennis tournament in the world, but it may be consigned to a back seat as the Brit footballers have been making a good show of things in Russia and are through to the quarterfinals by beating Colombia.
The game went the full time and the extra time to get to a penalty kick shootout, a happening that has bitter memories following three occasions where a shootout doomed The Three Lions to three exits.
It was redemption of the major sort for England manager Gareth Southgate, who has been the goat since England lost a shootout presided over by Southgate 22 years ago.
As the manger of a code where rankings mean nothing, Southgate is rather philosophical about his failing nearly a quarter of a century ago, telling the Associated Press, “It will never be off my back, sadly. That’s something that will live with me forever. But today is a special moment for this team.
Regular, injury and penalty time resulted in a 1 – 1 draw with the Tricolors and with the shootout looming, all of England cared little about the goings on at the All England Tennis Club.
The win earned England a match with Sweden Sunday coming in Samara.
The decider was netted by Eric Dier. “It was a nervous one,” Dier said with typical British reserve. “I’ve never really been in a situation like that before.
Harry Kane continues to be a goal scoring machine, kicking his sixth of the 2018 FIFA World Cup tournament with a penalty kick in the 57th minute. Colombia waited until the last possible moment to gain the equaliser, with Yerry Mina headed in a corner in the third minute of stoppage time.
That must have deflated the Three Lions, and for Southgate, it must have seemed like a bad dream to be drawn with victory so within grasp.