But the way things have gone so far, there is no denying that the Three Lions have a great chance of reaching the final.
But with Rakitic and Modric operating centrally and Andrej Kramaric inclined to drop off behind lone striker Mario Mandzukic, the danger of Croatia dominating the central areas is a very real one for England.
Sir Alf Ramsey led England to World Cup glory in 1966 (PA Archive).
"It's been a long time since England have done well in a major tournament, and we've got a tough game coming up against Croatia, but we feel confident".
"We know them well".
'She's done a lot of work with us, more so leading into the World Cup before we got out here.
England secured their first semi-final place in the tournament for 28 years after seeing off Sweden 2-0 on Saturday, with only Croatia standing in their way of reaching the final following their dramatic penalty shootout victory against hosts Russian Federation.
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But after two knockout games in which they were favourites against Colombia and Sweden, England now face a high-quality, highly tactical opponent and Southgate must decide if his trusted formation is really suited for such a task.
"To beat them, we'll have to make our own luck ... we'll have to be ready to suffer".
These guys are a couple of games away from being immortalised, I bet they can't wait for the next game to start.
"The tournament has been unbelievable", he said.
'There are some good ones in there, the players enjoy listening to them too, they've had a few sing-alongs on the way back from games and hopefully that will continue on Wednesday'.
"Yes, as a player you want to score goals", he told reporters.
'I took it off for the first game (against Tunisia) - this is a bit of a silly superstition - but the first game here was the first game in ages I haven't had it on, and I got injured, so I'm going to be keeping it on again'. "It's [meant so] much to me and the whole team!" I think he wanted to keep that shirt, but he was polite about it.
Meanwhile, Dele Alli, who scored England's second goal, said it was a great team performance.