As if all of that were not enough, France have also came through the competition with no serious injuries, while Mandzukic ended the semi-final with a knock.
Southgate's team made a fine start to their quest to become the first England side to reach the final in 52 years but faded in the second half before going down 2-1 to the Croatians after extra time at the Luzhniki Stadium.More news: Apple rumoured to be releasing a linewide hardware refresh this year
Asked what is was all about, a slightly bemused Southgate said: "That's exactly what I asked our fitness coach a well, 'What is that all about?'". It was a insane moment, they were delighted.
Quick as a flash, he picked up his camera and took some remarkable close-up shots of the Croats' joy.
"It's Coming Home" is the phrase that has been used a motto for England's World Cup campaign in Russian Federation. Subscribe to our SMS sports service by texting "SPORTS" to 22840.More news: England manager Gareth Southgate reflects on World Cup exit
Indeed, the former defender is thrilled to witness the country unite behind his side during a tumultuous political period, with Brexit causing uncertainty and division across much of England and Britain. "Another one picked up my lens and another player (Domagoj Vida) gave me a kiss". It is the first time in our lifetime that we have seen a semi final. Meanwhile England have now lost two semifinals, 1990 and 2018 and it has been 52 years since they last played the final in 1966. Look at the other teams they'll be up against.
"They played their best, it obviously wasn't to be". We want this to be a family-friendly occasion and a chance for England fans young and old to show the positive spirit of football to the country and the world. "We were able to win again after going to extra time".
The Croatians went into Russian Federation as the 20th-ranked team in the world, but in particular their midfield talents of Real Madrid's Luka Modric and Barcelona's Ivan Rakitic meant they were fancied by many as dark horses for a decent run. I thought it would be more of a test than this.More news: Meghan Markle high-fives children at Croke Park during visit
Croatia is the fourth-smallest country of the 32 World Cup teams with just over 4 million people. "We have never won the World Cup so we can't say the same thing, can we?" he concluded.