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A look at England’s World Cup quarter-finals since 1966 ahead of France clash

Wayne Rooney was sent off in the 2006 World Cup quarter-final defeat to Portugal (Martin Rickett/PA)
Wayne Rooney was sent off in the 2006 World Cup quarter-final defeat to Portugal (Martin Rickett/PA)

England have played in six World Cup quarter-finals since Bobby Moore lifted the Jules Rimet Trophy at Wembley in 1966.

Here, the PA news agency takes a look back at those past encounters.

1970: West Germany 3 England 2 (aet)

The world champions had finished second behind Brazil in their group, which set up another meeting with West Germany.

With Gordon Banks struck down by food poisoning, Chelsea’s Peter Bonetti deputised in goal, but it looked to matter little as Alan Mullery and Martin Peters gave England a 2-0 lead.

Franz Beckenbauer, though, grabbed a lifeline with 20 minutes left when his shot squirmed under Bonetti.

After Bobby Charlton had been substituted, Uwe Seeler headed over the Chelsea keeper to send the tie to extra time – and Gerd Muller then volleyed in the winner to send Alf Ramsey’s men home.

1986: Argentina 2 England 1

Argentina captain Diego Maradona scored two unforgettable goals to beat England at Estadio Azteca in Mexico City.

Maradona controversially punched the opener beyond England goalkeeper Peter Shilton – which Tunisian referee Ali Bin Nasser allowed to stand – before scoring a superb individual effort, later voted ‘Goal of the Century’.

The Argentina playmaker, who died aged 60 in November 2020, claimed his contentious opening goal was scored “a little with the head of Maradona and a little with the hand of God”.

Gary Lineker, who won the Golden Boot as top scorer, halved the deficit late on with his sixth goal of the tournament – and almost snatched a dramatic equaliser from another John Barnes cross as England again came up just short.

1990: England 3 Cameroon 2 (aet)

Four years later at Italia 90, Bobby Robson’s men were given a stern test by Cameroon, who were Africa’s first quarter-finalists.

After David Platt put England in front, Cameroon fought back to lead through a penalty from Emmanuel Kunde and Eugene Ekeke’s strike, but Lineker equalised from the spot with eight minutes left.

Lineker slotted in another penalty during extra time, having been brought down after latching on to a pass from Paul Gascoigne, to seal a memorable victory – setting up a showdown with West Germany, which would end in penalty shoot-out heartbreak.

2002: Brazil 2 England 1

England captain David Beckham is dejected as Brazilian Roberto Carlos celebrates
England captain David Beckham saw his side knocked out of the 2002 World Cup by Brazil (Kirsty Wigglesworth/PA)

Captained by David Beckham, who had been a major doubt for the tournament after a metatarsal fracture, England beat Argentina in the group stage and then defeated Denmark 3-0 to make the last eight, where they faced favourites Brazil.

Michael Owen gave England the lead in Shizuoka, but Ronaldinho set up Rivaldo to equalise in first-half stoppage time.

Then, early in the second half, Ronaldinho’s speculative long-range free-kick floated over a backpedalling David Seaman and in off the underside of the crossbar.

Brazil finished with 10 men after Ronaldinho was later sent off, but England could not find a way back and went home empty-handed once again.

2006: Portugal 0 England 0 (aet, 3-1 on pens)

England had been knocked out of the 2004 European Championship on penalties by Portugal – and history repeated itself two years later in Gelsenkirchen.

Beckham had been forced off injured before tempers flared as Wayne Rooney was sent off in the second half after his then-Manchester United team-mate Cristiano Ronaldo had alerted the referee to a stamp on Ricardo Carvalho – and afterwards winked to the Portuguese bench.

The match remained goalless after extra-time, leaving Sven-Goran Eriksson’s men facing another shoot-out lottery.

Saved spot-kicks from Frank Lampard, Steven Gerrard and Jamie Carragher allowed Ronaldo to apply the killer blow to England’s ‘Golden Generation’ – and signal the end of Eriksson’s tenure.

2018: England 2 Sweden 0

Gareth Southgate’s young side had made it to the last eight in Russia on the back of a nerve-shredding win over Colombia on penalties to break their World Cup shoot-out duck.

There was, though, no more nail-biting drama in Samara as headed goals from Harry Maguire and Dele Alli ether side of half-time sent England into the World Cup semi-finals for the first time in 28 years.

However, the nation’s dreams back home were once again left in tatters following defeat after extra time as Croatia recovered from going behind to Kieran Trippier’s early strike to reach the final.