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Kane looks to future, Deschamps admits luck on France’s side

And then there were four. As the action in Qatar approaches its climax, four teams and four matches remain at the FIFA World Cup.

Here’s all the latest World Cup news.

Penalty miss ‘will hurt’, but Kane ready for next challenge

As the Three Lions looked for a way back into the quarter-final deep into the second half, Harry Kane had a golden chance to level the game from the penalty spot. Kane had beaten Spurs teammate Hugo Lloris from the same situation but failed at the second time of asking with everything on the line, blazing his spot kick over the crossbar.

Despite the heartbreaking end for England their skipper said in a message to fans he will use the experience for motivation for the next challenge.

“Absolutely gutted. We’ve given it everything and it’s come down to a small detail which I take responsibility for. There’s no hiding from it, it hurts and it’ll take some time to get over it but that’s part of sport,” Kane wrote on Instagram.

“Now it’s about using the experience to be mentally and physically stronger for the next challenge. Thanks for all the support throughout the tournament – it means a lot.”

Once the quarter-final wounds heal, there is certainly reason to believe the future is bright for the Three Lions. From the 11 who started against France, only Kyle Walker and Jordan Henderson will be over 35 by the time 2026 rolls around. Young stars Phil Foden, Bukayo Saka and Jude Bellingham will only get better, and in four years’ time players like Jordan Pickford and Kane will be steely veterans.

(Photo by Liu Lu/VCG via Getty Images)

Time will tell whether Gareth Southgate is the man to lead England to the 2024 European Championships and the next World Cup but whoever is leading them, this is a squad on the rise.

Deschamps admits France got lucky in dramatic quarter-final

On the other side of that compelling clash, Didier Deschamps has admitted his team had luck on their side as they progressed to their second straight World Cup semi-final.

England were awarded two penalties but it took a VAR check to confirm the second spot kick after Theo Hernandez made heavy contact with Mason Mount in the area.

The English press tore referee Wilton Sampaio apart for his performance, and the Les Bleus manager recognised that some big calls could have against his team.

“It was a big game, we played a superb England team who are strong technically and physically,” Deschamps said.

“It’s brilliant for the players to be in the last four again. We got a bit lucky although we gave away two penalties but we kept our lead with our hearts and our guts.”

Manchester United legend Gary Neville had some harsh words for the man with the whistle.

“I’ve been on Sky 10, 11 years and I very rarely say a referee is an absolute disgrace, but he was a shocker,” Neville said.

“Even the penalty given against (Theo) Hernandez wasn’t given on the pitch. And don’t overthink that, it was a blatant foul. It’s a double mistake – the fullback has lost his man and then barges him in the back. You see defenders ease players out – this wasn’t that, it was a barge in the back of a player. The referee was so bad. The first goal was harsh.”

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