South Tyneside civic leaders back England ahead of World Cup semi-final

England players celebrate during their World Cup quarter-final win against Sweden. Pic by PA.
England players celebrate during their World Cup quarter-final win against Sweden. Pic by PA.

Civic leaders in South Tyneside are backing England to book a place in Sunday’s World Cup Final with victory of Croatia tonight.

Gareth Southgate’s young team, including North East former Sunderland players Jordan Pickford and Jordan Henderson, will kick-off tonight’s semi-final at 7pm in Moscow.

Emma Lewell-Buck, Labour MP for South Shields.

Emma Lewell-Buck, Labour MP for South Shields.

Should they win, it will be the first the time the Three Lions have reached a major tournament final since Alf Ramsey’s team won the World Cup in 1966.

South Shields MP Emma Lewell-Buck told the Gazette: “Amidst chaos in Government the England team are uniting the country and showing how good leadership can make a difference.

“I wish the lads all the best in tonight’s game and I know they will make the country proud.”

The Mayor of South Tyneside, Coun Ken Stephenson said that in his opinion the team had played “tremendously well” so far in the competition.

Mayor of South Tyneside Coun Ken Stephenson.

Mayor of South Tyneside Coun Ken Stephenson.

He said: “It is fantastic to see the England team in the semi-finals and it would be amazing if they make it through to the final.

“The squad have played tremendously well and are making us all extremely proud.

“We wish them the best of luck this week.

“The council will, of course, be showing its support and joining the rest of the country to cheer England on, with the St George flag flying above South Shields Town Hall.”

England won group games against Tunisia and Panama before losing to Belgium.

The round of 16 game with Colombia ended in a nerve-shredding penalty shootout, with Washington-born goalkeeper Pickford becoming the hero after saving one effort.

Saturday saw Southgate’s men sweep aside Sweden in a 2-0 quarter-final win thanks to goals from defender Harry Maguire and midfielder Dele Alli.