Here's how the English and Croatian front pages handled last night's 'shock' result

A new generation of sporting heroes who united a country that once again dared to dream of glory: that’s the verdict of England’s newspapers after their World Cup exit.

Meanwhile, in Croatia the press is looking forward to a “fiery finale” against France.

The Sun hails England’s “23 Lions”, saying there is “pride despite the agony” and the each of the team comes home a hero.

The Daily Mirror proclaims Gareth Southgate’s men as “heroes”, its leader stating: “Thanks to them, millions of people have been united and have rekindled their love for the beautiful game.”

“We salute you” reads the Daily Mail‘s back page, the paper praising Southgate for bringing about what “feels like the start of something every Englishman could get used to”.

Meanwhile on its front page the paper pays tribute the team for bringing the nation together and making England proud.

The Daily Express thanks the England team for helping the nation “live the dream” and they can return home with their “heads held high”.

The Times says the Lions “will return home after Saturday’s third-place game as heroes who have united the country and made the most sceptical of fans fall in love with the team again.

The Guardian says it was “the end of the dream” on its cover, while its sports writer, Barney Ronay, says the “capable England team played above itself and turned a drowsy, toxic summer back home into something else”.

The Daily Telegraph‘s columnist Jim White says: “What a remarkable dream they gave us, in the process transforming the country, stirring the collective soul, giving us something positive to gather around.”

And in Croatia the Slobodna Dalmacija looks forward to a “fiery finale” with France.

- Press Association

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