With the scores still level after 120 minutes, penalties were required to decide who would face Sweden in the quarter finals, as England banished their demons to win their first World Cup penalty shootout, although Pekerman was far from complementary of Gareth Southgate's side post-match.
Following a nail-biting and bad-tempered affair in Moscow, the game was decided by penalty kicks, and it was England who held their nerve and booked their place in the quarter finals after winning the shootout 4-3.
Jordan Henderson's penalty was saved, only for Mateus Uribe's effort to rattle the crossbar and Pickford to then deny Carlos Bacca.
Behind them, Jordan Pickford, the 24-year-old goalkeeper in just his seventh England appearance, had a night he will never forget. "That shouldn't change now that we're in the knockout phase", he said. Hopefully it will give belief to the generations of players that follow.
"The players have really executed everything (in the shootout) that we've talked about exceptionally well and we showed incredible resilience to come back from huge disappointment at the final whistle and keep our calm".
England, which led 1-0 until Yerry Mina's 93rd-minute header canceled out Harry Kane's penalty opener, went into the shootout having won just one of their previous seven. I apologise to the Colombian people, but the players are not to blame as we don't choose the referees. We were behind, and wanting Pickers to save one, and he did.
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Colombia's Johan Mojica was seen trying to kick up the turf on the penalty spot to try to make it bobble before Kane could step up for the kick.
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Pickford made a superb save to touch wide what could have been the goal of the tournament from Uribe but from the following corner - Colombia's first of the match - giant defender Mina rose highest to head in the equalizer.
Poignant snaps show him hugging star striker Kane and also congratulating Eric Dier, who found the back of the net with the final penalty of the match.
"It was a nervous one".
After his side was shown six yellow cards, Colombia coach Jose Pekerman made clear his unhappiness with US referee Mark Geiger.
Inside the arena, the lowest number of England fans since the Tunisia game - officially numbering 2,225 - were drowned out by their rivals until after the game, when the players went over to take selfies and share the special moment with them. There is a lot of confusion.
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