England conquer hearts and minds but USA take semi-final spoils

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Steph Houghton’s missed spot kick ensured Phil Neville’s side were beaten 2-1 by USA in the Women’s World Cup semi-final on a night when they came agonisingly close to making history

The scourge of missed penalties at a major tournament returned to haunt England last night as their dizzying progress at this Women’s World Cup came to a painful – and familiar – end in the semi-finals. As the United States celebrated their 2-1 victory, England’s captain Steph Houghton trudged off the pitch, alone in a stadium of 53,000 spectators, having missed an 83rd minute spot-kick to equalise.

Related: Alex Morgan fires USA past England into Women’s World Cup final

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