Croatia fear England's Sterling in World Cup semis

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However, blasting such abuses and cheap comments, Neville has now praised Sterling's performance and insisted the player is being targetted without any reason.

Ex-England right-back and coach Gary Neville blasted the half-time treatment of the 23-year-old on social media as "absolutely disgusting".

The Manchester City midfielder has been criticised for missing chances at the World Cup, the most recent of which came in the 2-0 win over Sweden in the quarter-final.

"To run in behind [Andreas] Granqvist all that time, he kept getting in and getting in".

Beckham said: "It is wrong".

Asked what it would mean to defeat England, Dalic said: "It's already a great achievement for us to be in the last four because some big teams are already swimming on their vacation - Argentina, Brazil, Germany and so on".

Sterling has started four of England's five games on their run to the semi-finals, looking threatening at times yet unable to end an global goal drought that dates back to October 2015.

Meanwhile, ignoring all the abuses and taunts, Sterling has applauded the support of English fans in Russian Federation.

"I wouldn't say there are any glaring weaknesses (in England's team) since they are in the semi-finals, that says it all".

Sterling and co face Croatia on Wednesday evening, with the victor facing either France or Belgium in the final on Sunday in what is now an all-European affair, the third time this will have happened in four tournaments.

'Raz, he's a nightmare for us defenders, ' said the defender.

"It's so clear to see if you were to watch back the games, the importance he has on the team".

"If we had England's money, who knows where we'd be in our country?"

The Three Lions have performed admirably throughout the tournament, yet one Englishman seems to be the target of most vitriol.