World Cup 2018: How does England's potential route look?

England's route to the final
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2018 Fifa World Cup on the BBC
Host: Russia Dates: 14 June - 15 July
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England beat Colombia on penalties to reach the World Cup quarter-finals - as they attempt to take advantage of what appears to be a more favourable route through the knockout stages.

After winning a World Cup shootout for the first time, Gareth Southgate's side face Sweden and seek a first semi-final appearance since 1990.

Before Tuesday's victory, the Three Lions had won only two World Cup knockout matches since Italia '90 - against Denmark in 2002 and Ecuador in 2006.

They were knocked out by Germany at the last-16 stage in 2010, and failed to make it out of the group four years ago.

Defeat in their final Group G game by Belgium, who are ranked third in the world, has appeared to work in England's favour.

It means they avoided the side of the draw that included four of the other top seven sides in the Fifa rankings - including Brazil, who are Belgium's quarter-final opponents.

No previous World Cup winners now stand between Southgate's side and the 15 July final in Moscow.

England's quarter-final opponents

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Highlights: Sweden 1-0 Switzerland

While Belgium are facing tournament favourites Brazil, England are up against one-time beaten finalists Sweden.

Sweden have not gone beyond the last 16 of a World Cup since 1994 and are 12 places behind England in the world rankings. This is their first World Cup since 2006, and they qualified with a 1-0 play-off win over Italy.

Wins over Mexico and South Korea helped them finish top of Group F - their only defeat coming courtesy of Toni Kroos' 95th-minute winner for Germany.

They beat Switzerland 1-0 in their last-16 tie on Tuesday to reach the quarter-finals.

And if England go one step further...

The good news for England is that Spain - who were seen as the best side in this half of the draw - were knocked out on penalties by Russia in the last 16.

England or Sweden will face the winners of Saturday's match between Croatia and Russia - ranked 70th in the world - in the semi-finals.

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