MOSCOW -- England's World Cup semifinal defeat to Croatia will hurt for a long time, striker Harry Kane said after their 2-1 extra-time loss on Wednesday.
"It's tough, we're gutted," Kane said. "We worked so hard, the fans were amazing, it was a tough game, a 50-50 game, when we look back we will think there's stuff we could have done better.
"We worked as hard as we could... it hurts, it hurts a lot and it will hurt for a long time. We have had a fantastic journey, further than we thought," he added.
An early goal from Kieran Trippier looked to have England on their way to a first World Cup final since 1966, but Ivan Perisic headed home in the second half to force extra time, where Mario Mandzukic scored from an England defensive miscue to send Croatia to their first-ever final.
And Kane said after the match it was hard to put a finger on what had gone wrong for the Three Lions so soon after the heartbreaking loss.
"We created some good chances when we were 1-0 up, maybe we dropped a little too deep but we didn't get enough pressure on the ball. There are a lot of ifs and buts, in these games it's small margins.
"It's hard to say [what went wrong]. There's a lot we could have done better. They played well and made it difficult for us... it's hard to put your finger of it."
England goalkeeper Jordan Pickford, who made the most of his first-choice status for Gareth Southgate at the World Cup, said the team was obviously disappointed with the result but added that supporters should expect more from this young squad in the future.
"It was an experience for us and one we wanted to win," said Pickford, who allowed only six goals across all of England's six matches. "Maybe we went ahead too early, we needed that next goal to kill off the tie and we had some good chances but never put them away.
"A team like Croatia, we know their threats going forward, they have some quality players. We weathered some storms.
"We have to show pride and passion which we have. Look at the fans tonight, there was a lump in my throat watching the fans applaud us at the end. I feel that as a nation we have progressed and hopefully there is more to come in the future."