78 min Rebic turns smartly and finds Vrsaljko, whose cutback is coolly intercepted by Rice. He’s had a really good game. In fact England’s three central midfielders have been excellent, which is significant as that’s where the World Cup semi-final was lost.
77 min “I was just thinking how few shirtless men I’d seen in the crowd even with this heat,” says Sean Boiling. “Then Raheem pops up and the shirts fly off.”
Heaven knows what state of undress Ian Copestake is in by now.
76 min There’s a break in play while John Stones receives treatment. This doesn’t look great, actually, and Ben White is warming up.
75 min England have never won their opening game at a European Championship. But they have thrown away a lead before. In 1980, and 1996, and 2000, and 2004, and 2012, and 2016.
74 min: Sterling misses an excellent chance! Trippier’s deep, driven free-kick is headed back smartly by Mings towards Sterling, who lashes it over the bar with his left foot. That was a really good opportunity.
73 min A cross from the right is headed on by Rebic towards Perisic, and Walker does really well to get between him and the ball to shepherd it through to Pickford.
71 min And a change for England: Phil Foden, who had a decent game and hit the post early on, is replaced by Marcus Rashford.
70 min Two changes for Croatia: Nikola Vlasic and Josip Brekalo replace Brozovic and Kramaric.
70 min Modric drives it flat to the edge of the D, where Brozovic charges onto the ball but volleys well wide.
67 min Mount whips the free-kick just over the bar. Livakovic had it covered but it was sweetly stuck. Mount has been his usual perky, purposeful self.
66 min Brozovic fouls Mount 22 yards from goal and is booked. This free-kick is in a great position, and Mount will surely take this one.
65 min: Rebic misses a great chance! Croatia should be level. Kovacic’s long-range snapshot was blocked by Stones on the six-yard line. But he could only divert it straight to Rebic, who dragged well wide from 15 yards. That was a really flustered attempt.
64 min The goal has re-energised England, for richer and poorer. Foden is booked for a slightly overzealous tackle on Gvardiol.
61 min: Sensational defending from Gvardiol! Phillips and Foden combined to find Mount on the left of the area. He clipped a superb cross towards Kane, who was about to score at the far post when Gvardiol stretched around him to clear. Kane’s momentum took him into the post, and he is still down.
It’s Raheem Sterling’s first goal at a major tournament. But it also belongs to Kalvin Phillips, who made it with a superb, surging run. He beat two players in the inside-right channel and angled a perfect through ball to Sterling, who was on the move as always and forced a first-time shot through Livakovic. That’s a lovely moment for Sterling, who has had such a bad time at major tournaments, and also for the outstanding Kalvin Phillips.
England take the lead against the run of play!
55 min Modric’s long-range shot is easily saved by Pickford. Croatia kept the ball for a long time beforehand, and if I was an England fan I’d be reaching for the Jaws soundtrack.
55 min Broadly speaking, the slower the game, the more it suits Croatia. At the moment it’s being played at a snail’s pace.
54 min Kane turns Vida smartly, 25 yards from goal, but his through pass to Sterling is intercepted. I thought he was going to hit that.
52 min “I’m watching in America at a bakery,” says Jenn Sykes. “In a lot of places here you can’t sell alcohol on Sundays until the afternoon so the bars won’t open. It’s a bit jarring to watch a game surrounded by pink boxes and cupcakes, but they have a TV and cable subscription so I’ll take it!”
50 min A dodgy backheader from Trippier almost puts Rebic through on goal, but the alert Pickford charges out of his area and boots the ball clear. Croatia have started the second half well.
48 min Kovacic is booked for a crunching tackle on his clubmate Mount. He did win the ball but the referee decided his challenge was irresponsible, reckless or whatever the word is.
46 min Mings’ attempted pass to Stones is blocked by Perisic, with the ball looping into the arms of Pickford. For a split-second it looked like it might drift over him into the net, which would have registered about 9.2 on the Gualtierifarceometer.
“An impressive first five minutes,” high-fives Chris Harrison, “followed by lots of aimless sideways and backwards tiki-taka, Sterling huffing and puffing but ultimately either tripping over the ball, giving it away or nearly hitting the corner flag when your average U.12 would have found it easier to test the keeper. And Harry who?”
You must have loved the second half against Switzerland in 1996.
“If it is so hot there, the game will only get slower in the second half,” says John Burrell. “Is that a bad omen for England?”
Not necessarily, especially as both teams can use five substitutes. England have some good attacking options – Grealish, Rashford, Grealish, Calvert-Lewin, Grealish, Saka, Grealish, Grealish and possibly even Grealish.
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Peep peep! An intriguing half – that’s not a euphemism – ends goalless. Phil Foden hit the post early on, and for a while it looked like England’s young team might overrun Croatia. But as the half went on Croatia came into it and started to slow the game down in the heat.
45 min Perisic plays a smart give-and-go on the edge of the area, but Mings steps across to make an important challenge. He’s had a good half.