"I think our job is to maximise the strengths that we have and to make the most of the team that we have", the England boss said, having seen nine of his side's 12 goals come from set-pieces.
While going to 30 minutes of extra time in all three of their sudden-death matches - not to mention emotional energy-sapping penalty shootouts in two - has proved beyond doubt Croatia's resilience, it has taken its toll.
His Belgian counterpart Roberto Martinez was similarly unenthused about the game after his side were beaten 1-0 by France on Tuesday.
"This is fantastic. Two players played with half a leg, but it didn´t show". Croatia began to get on top, and the Three Lions were punished when Perišić 's equaliser sent the match into extra time. This shows character and is what makes me proud.
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On Sunday, the prime minister, Shinzo Abe, said efforts to locate those still stranded had turned into a "race against time ". The Japanese Government set up an emergency office over the weekend, designed for crises such as major earthquakes.
Defender Kyle Walker tweeted that he had "never felt so gutted" but said he wanted people to remain positive. "But once you're here and played as well as we did, you want to take those opportunities in life".
'We are all happy to be staying in Moscow, that was our goal.
Croatia's forward Mario Mandzukic celebrates after scoring his team's second goal during the Russian Federation 2018 World Cup semi-final match between Croatia and England at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow on July 11, 2018. They want to win.
Luka Modric has been inspirational throughout their run, yet there were numerous outstanding performances at the Luzhniki Stadium as Croatia recovered from a shaky opening half hour. Mandzukic rushed to join teammates celebrating at the corner of the pitch. "Who would have thought it, at the start of the tournament when everyone was writing us off?"
"Pogba was mature. He played the game with great maturity".
"We needed him for this competition and it is on this point that he has really progressed".