THE ENGLAND World Cup team boarded a plane to Russia from Birmingham Airport carrying the expectations of the nation.
Pictures show a pensive manager Gareth Southgate and star striker Harry Kane getting on board the 12:42pm plane to the capital, St Petersburg.
The World Cup – football’s greatest tournament – begins on Thursday (June 14).
England’s 23-man squad will touch down at around 5.35pm – Russian time.
From there they will venture to the team’s training base just outside of the capital in Repino.
England will kick off their campaign on Monday (June 18) against Tunisia at the Volgograd Arena.
They go into the tournament in good form following last week’s win against Costa Rica.
Despite being a youthful England side, with little international football experience, the country will be hoping for an improvement on crashing out in the group-stages at the last World Cup in Brazil.
Birmingham Airport tweeted: “The England squad have used Birmingham airport today to make their way to World Cup 2018. A big thanks to Birmingham Airport Police for keeping the players and all other travellers safe.”