England fans concentrate on the long game after defeat by Belgium

It is not just the quality of opposition down the line that made second place appear attractive – England have reduced their travel time in the case of a successful run

England supporters will no doubt be plotting their way to the final, despite the result against Belgium. With the pre-match talk dominated by the suspicion that finishing second in Group G would be beneficial, fans could shrug off defeat by focusing on the long game.

Related: Five things we learned from England’s World Cup group defeat by Belgium | Dominic Fifield

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