Come on England! Millions to descend on pubs for Croatia match as Gareth Southgate's World Cup team prepares for first semi-final in 28 years

Fiona Simpson

Millions of nervous football fans are set to descend on the country's pubs and beer gardens as England prepare for their first World Cup semi-final in 28 years.

Offices across the country will see a mass exodus around 4pm as fans spark an early rush hour to make it home for tonight's 7pm kick off.

Throngs of hopeful supporters have made a last minute dash to Russia and 30,000 are set to descend on London’s Hyde Park ahead of England’s clash with Croatia .

If Gareth Southgate’s squad are successful they will face France in Sunday’s final.

The big match marks the first time an England team have made it this far in the tournament since Paul Gascoigne and his teammates took on Germany in 1990.

England fans make a last minute dash to Moscow (PA)

“It’s Coming Home” appeared to be on the lips of around 10,000 England fans who made a last minute dash to Moscow to get behind the team.

Among them were Will Carr and Dale Goulding, who made the decision to book flights last Thursday before progress was guaranteed.

Gareth Southgate lookalike Neil Rowe poses with fans in Red Square ahead of England's clash with Croatia (Getty Images)

Mr Goulding, 27, from Clapham Junction, south London, said the plan was to get to the ticket office early and pick up any tickets being resold through official channels, and failing that they would play the touts at their own game.

"What the touts are doing is getting people coming to the Fifa ticket office and saying I'll give you £50 more, knowing they can sell it to and England fan for £150 more," he said.

"We are going to turn up in our England tops - we're genuine. We are going to do what they are doing.

"We are going to stand there and say, 'any tickets, we need a ticket', and if that doesn't work, we'll go to the ground."

Mr Carr, 25, from Acomb, in York, said the pair knew they had to get to Russia for the game, given neither were alive the last time England played such a crucial tie.

"Everyone's believing," he said.

England fans go wild at Croydon Boxpark following the team's quarter-final win over Sweden (Getty Images)

"It was a bit of a joke to begin with that football was coming home.

"It's actually coming home.

"We heard some Russian guy shouting, 'it's coming home' earlier.

"It's a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

"This is it, Croatia then France and we've got a World Cup."

Fans celebrate England's quarter final win (Getty Images)

Mr Goulding agreed: "It's just fallen so brilliantly for us. Not having Germany, not having Portugal, not having Italy, not having Spain, I'll take that every day.

"You're not going to have a better chance."

Despite fans’ excitement, Prince Harry refused to “jinx” Southgate’s 11, refusing to tell Royal watchers in Dublin his predictions for the game.

Former Irish rugby legend Brian O’Driscoll told the Press Association: “"I asked him, 'so, is football coming home?"'

"But he refused to say it. I think he just said he isn't as confident as everyone else about England winning tomorrow.

Huge crowds gathered on the Champs Elysee in Paris to celebrate France's semi-final win (EPA)

"He said he won't say it because he doesn't want to jinx it."

Across the UK, pubs, bars, gardens and public parks are getting ready to host huge World Cup parties - with police warning fans not to "overstep the line" with any celebrations in light of the excesses following Saturday's quarter-final victory.

Around 30,000 people are expected in London's Hyde Park, where a special screening has been organised.

French fans partied in Paris last night as their team secured a place in the final.

President Emmanuel Macron was pictured punching the air in jubilation as he watched his men battle to victory over Belgium.

After Samuel Umtiti shot his team to 1 – 0 victory hundreds of thousands of people lined the Champs-Elysee as celebrations erupted across the French capital.