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England's route to World Cup 2018 final: Who would Three Lions face & when are the matches?

20:46 GMT+3 03/07/2018
Harry Kane Panama hattrick
Gareth Southgate's side are just four games away from Russia 2018 glory, but who is standing in their way?

Is it coming home? Should England best Colombia in today's last 16 fixture, the road will be wide open for them to make it to the final.

England are four fixtures away from potentially lifting the World Cup for just the second time in their history and defy all odds.

For a team that has been riddled with past demons and needless baggage across the last several years, this summer's squad are young and fresh and could very well deliver the goods in Russia.

So who lies in England's path for World Cup glory? 

Who could England face en route to the final?

England have been placed in the kinder side of the bracket in the knockout phases. In fact, their group draw was gentle as well, as their Group G only consisted of real challengers Belgium who they were unable to beat, but still progressed from as the other opponents were Tunisia and Panama.

Gareth Southgate's side avoided the so-called big-name 'favourites' of the tournament in Brazil, Uruguay, France and Belgium as they have been placed on the opposite side of the bracket.

France eliminated Argentina and Uruguay beat Portugal to earn a quarter-final tie, while Brazil and Belgium will battle it out in the second last-eight fixture. England are lucky to have finished second in their group – otherwise they would have to face Brazil in the quarter-finals. Instead, they would face Sweden.

Should they defeat Sweden, they will then face the winner of Russia vs Croatia in a semi-final tie. Sweden weren't an obvious favourite heading into the tournament but have had an impressive campaign, winning against South Korea and Mexico and deserved at least a point against Germany.

It is also important to note that Sweden also bested both Italy and the Netherlands in qualification for Russia.

If England were to claim victory over both Colombia and Sweden, they won't be facing one of Uruguay, France, Brazil or Belgium until the final to be played on July 15, though that will be a very daunting task indeed.

Date Round Team Team
July 7 Quarter-final Sweden Colombia / England
July 10 Semi-final Russia / Croatia Sweden  / Colombia / England
July 15 Final Uruguay / France / Brazil / Belgium Sweden  / Colombia / England