Progress slow over years for Three Li­ons ...

Yorkshire Post - Sports Monday - - WORLD CUP 2018 -

ENG­LAND WERE ap­pear­ing at their fourth World Cup in 1962 but only twice in his­tory have the Three Li­ons gone fur­ther than the quar­ter-fi­nal stage that proved to be the limit for Wal­ter Win­ter­bot­tom’s men in Chile.

The peak, of course, came four years later on home soil as Bobby Moore lifted the Jules Rimet Tro­phy at Wembley as West Ger­many were beaten 4-2 af­ter ex­tra-time.

De­feat on penal­ties in 1990 then de­nied Eng­land a sec­ond ap­pear­ance in the fi­nal, the Ger­mans ex­act­ing re­venge as misses by Stu­art Pearce and Chris Wad­dle sent Bobby Rob­son’s side tum­bling out. Oth­er­wise, Eng­land’s in­volve­ment in the World Cup fi­nals has largely been a sorry tale with the tone set in 1950 via a shock de­feat to the United States that led to elim­i­na­tion in the group stage.

It was the first of three tour­na­ments that the Three Li­ons failed to reach the knock­out stage (1958 & 2014), while 1998 and 2010 brought an exit in the round of 16. There was also an ap­pear­ance in the sec­ond group stage in 1982, while 1962 was one of six de­feats in the quar­ter-fi­nals.

The most re­cent of those came un­der Sven Goran Eriks­son in 2002 and 2006. Both were big dis­ap­point­ments at the time but the na­tion would surely take a re­peat in Rus­sia.

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