Pickford believes England can establish their own history in 2018

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The Three Lions are in the semifinals again for the first time in nearly three decades, and one of the men firmly involved in the country’s success wasn’t even born when England last found this sort of success.

Goalkeeper Jordan Pickford once again exemplified his importance to Gareth Southgate‘s team on Saturday with three massive saves in England’s 2-0 quarterfinals victory over Sweden.

The 24-year-old Everton keeper, who was born four years after England’s last semifinal visit, believes that the Three Lions are in position to re-write their own history this summer as the European nation aims to win its second World Cup in its storied career.

“I think [before] this [semifinal berth] it was 1990 and I wasn’t born for that, so I’ll take that,” Pickford told the BBC. “We have always said take one game, game-by-game, and we can go on and create our own history but it’s now about rest and recovery, but we’ll work hard and our ability should show.”

Pickford wasn’t tested often against Sweden, however, when he was, the young shot-stopper was prepared for a handful of brilliant saves to keep his first clean sheet of this World Cup.

“We knew it was going to be difficult against Sweden, we know what they bring to the party and we managed it very well,” Pickford said. “We worked hard and we’re showing our abilities and our mental side of the game.

“You got to be ready from the start, which I was and you’ve got to be alert and that’ll get you in the game straightaway, so after I made that first save, I think it was against [Marcus] Berg with his header about 47 minutes I felt that was me set for the rest of the game.”