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FIFA World Cup: Heartbreak for Gerrard as England exit

June 21, 2014 14:51 IST

FIFA World Cup: Heartbreak for Gerrard as England exit

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England's failure at the first hurdle at the Brazil World Cup caused heartache to captain Steven Gerrard.

-Complete coverage of the football World Cup

Within two months Gerrard has seen his dreams of career glory with club and country slither through his fingers in painful fashion.

After the trauma of Liverpool's home-straight collapse in the Premier League title race, the 34-year-old met with fresh heartbreak at the World Cup yesterday when Italy's 1-0 loss to Costa Rica condemned England to an embarrassing group-phase exit.

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Image: Steven Gerrard of England stretches
Photographs: Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

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FIFA World Cup: Heartbreak for Gerrard as England exit

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As the player ratings came in following England's loss to Uruguay in Sao Paulo, it was clear that older team members were judged to have been the main culprits in a defeat that consigned them to an early flight home from Brazil.

Danny Welbeck, 23, was among the worst-ranked performers at the Corinthians arena.

But alongside him in the hall of shame stood Leighton Baines, Glen Johnson, Phil Jagielka and Steven Gerrard, whose average age is nearly 31.

He spoke of "a terrible, long, frustrating summer if we don't get it right" and said that early elimination from a major tournament "can take an awful long time to get over".

It is not the first time that Gerrard's words have returned to haunt him this year.

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Image: Steven Gerrard of England and Luis Suarez of Uruguay compete for the ball
Photographs: Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

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FIFA World Cup: Heartbreak for Gerrard as England exit

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Gerrard was at fault for both of Luis Suarez's goals at the Corinthians Arena, giving the ball away in the build-up to his first and then inadvertently flicking a long punt from Uruguay goalkeeper Fernando Muslera into his path for the second.

Gerrard was not sure of his international future after the Uruguay game, saying "we'll analyse the game afterwards."

But it looks likely Tuesday’s encounter against Costa Rica would be his last in England colours.


Image: Steven Gerrard of England and Wayne Rooney acknowledge the fans after being defeated by Italy 2-1
Photographs: Adam Pretty/Getty Images

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