Henderson hopeful on fitness for World Cup semi-final

Jordan Henderson

Jordan Henderson

England will face Croatia in the semi-final of the World Cup at 7pm, Wednesday 11 July.

England's remarkable set-play success is the fruit of extra preparation on the training ground with attacking coach Allan Russell, who has travelled with Southgate to the United States to study strategies from the National Basketball Association and NFL.

Modric is Croatia's creative fulcrum and the effectiveness of the Real Madrid playmaker in Moscow will be integral to his nation's hopes of reaching the World Cup final for the first time.

The small European country have some tidy players, including Luka Modric, Ivan Rakitic and Mario Mandzukic.

Kane scored three goals for Tottenham Hotspur against Lovren's Liverpool last season, two in a 4-1 victory when a series of errors by the hapless Croatian defender saw him replaced after 31 minutes.

Asked what he would be demanding from his players, the England coach told ITV: "To be able to keep doing what we have been doing, play with real defensive discipline, good organisation, tactical awareness and then with the ball play with the freedom and expression that we have and the same patterns and movements that we have shown".

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

England have a clean bill of health for their World Cup semi-final against Croatia after all 23 players trained on Tuesday.

"We'd been spending a lot of time on set pieces, right down to the details, all the runs and the blocks", said midfielder Ruben Loftus-Cheek.

"They're very risky on set-pieces", said Real Madrid midfielder Modric.

"We'll just have to assess people as we go".

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