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Soccer England avenges World Cup loss to Croatia via Nations League win, reaches final four

Harry Kane celebrates as England advances to the final four of the inaugural UEFA Nations League by avenging their World Cup semi-final loss to Croatia.

CARL RECINE/Reuters

Harry Kane and England advanced to the final four of the inaugural UEFA Nations League by avenging their World Cup semi-final loss to Croatia.

The England captain ended a seven-game goal drought to complete a comeback at Wembley, sealing a 2-1 victory on Sunday in the final group game in European soccer’s newest competition. It came four months after England lost by the same score to Croatia in its first World Cup semi-final in 28 years.

Croatian players have said since July that they were inspired by the perceived arrogance of the “football’s coming home” lyric in the Three Lions team anthem.

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The song was played immediately after the final whistle at Wembley Stadium where Croatia won 11 years ago to deny England a trip to the 2008 European Championship.

Andrej Kramaric scored 12 minutes into the second half to put Croatia up, but Kane set up substitute Jesse Lingard’s equalizer in the 78th. The Tottenham striker netted the winner with a sliding kick seven minutes later for his first goal for England since the round of 16 at the World Cup. With the win, England clinched top spot in Group A4.

The Nations League Final Four tournament will be played in June in Portugal. The other two finalists will be Belgium or Switzerland and France or the Netherlands.

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