England squad touch down in UK as World Cup stars receive heroes’ welcome at Birmingham Airport after quarter-final loss

ENGLAND’S stars and staff have touched back down on home turf following last night’s heartbreaking World Cup exit.

The Three Lions suffered a heartbreaking 2-1 loss to France in the 2022 World Cup quarter-finals at the Al Bayt Stadium.

PAEngland’s squad have landed back on home soil after their World Cup exit[/caption]

Simon JonesGareth Southgate waves to the cameras as he heads home from the World Cup[/caption]

PAJude Bellingham gives a thumbs up as he departs Birmingham Airport[/caption]

Simon JonesKyle Walker looked rather more subdued after the painful defeat to the French[/caption]

Les Bleus controversially opened the scoring with Aurelien Tchouameni’s long-range stunner and Harry Kane levelled things up from the penalty spot before Olivier Giroud extended his scoring record with 53 goals.

England’s heroic captain had the chance to equalise once more with another spot-kick but he sadly missed the target.

That meant that our boys were on the next plane home – but not before they showed their class off the pitch this morning.

England showered hotel staff with gifts as they left to fly home from Qatar.

Players handed out signed shirts and hugged workers, who in turn said Southgate‘s 25-man squad had “made them feel like princes” and became “like family”.

Midfield sensation Jude Bellingham urged fans to “stick with us” as he went over to chat outside the hotel and sign autographs.

But Southgate says he is “reviewing” his future with FA chiefs, adding this was normal procedure after major tournaments.

However, those thoughts and the painful memories of yesterday will have to be cast aside after our gallant heroes returned back to normal life this evening.


Bellingham put on a brave face as he gave a thumbs up while leaving Birmingham Airport, while Phil Foden was happy to pose for photos after he touched down at Manchester Airport.

Meanwhile, Kyle Walker looked a lot more subdued as he headed back to Man City with his head bowed in the backseat of his chauffeur driven motor.

Southgate, 52, is now weighing up if he should stay in charge.

He said: “After every tournament we’ve sat down and reviewed and reflected.

“So we need a bit of time to make sure everyone makes the right decisions.”

“Whenever I’ve finished these tournaments I’ve needed time to make the correct decisions because emotionally you go through so many different feelings.”

GettyHarry Kane missed a late penalty that would have sent the game to extra-time[/caption]

GettyThe brave skipper has taken responsibility after the heartbreaking loss[/caption]

But it was our brave captain Kane, who blazed his 84th-minute penalty, who has taken responsibility for the World Cup exit and he says the result “will hurt for a while”.

He said: “It is a really tough night to take.

“I am gutted, the team are gutted. We had full belief that we could achieve something special at this World Cup but it came down to small details.

“I thought on the night we had the better chances and better spells in the game.

“It comes down to execution. As captain, I take it on the chin and responsibility missing the penalty.

“It is hard to take for sure but I can be proud of the group, proud of each other for what we’ve done.

“This will hurt for a while but we will dust ourselves down to get ready in the future.”

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