Iceland pulled off one of the most astonishing results in the history of European football on Monday, knocking England out of the Euro 2016 finals.

Playing at its first major international tournament, Iceland came from behind to win 2-1 in Nice and set up a quarterfinal tie against host nation France.

This victory, without doubt the most important in the country's history, not only inflicted humiliation on England but also underlined Iceland's reputation as a growing force in world football.

"This is without a doubt the biggest result in Icelandic football history," defender Kari Arnason told reporters. We've shocked the world.

"We kept our composure and defended well. We all believed, the rest of the world didn't but we did. I am overcome with joy."

For a country of 330,000, qualifying for the tournament was an achievement  but the success of this team has surpassed the nation's wildest dreams.

Led by the experienced Lars Lagerback and part-time dentist Heimir Hallgrimsson, Iceland has endeared itself to the watching world.

England, home of the world's richest league, was woeful. In a week where Great Britain voted to leave the European Union, England was sent packing from Euro 2016 in embarrassing fashion.

And it was the end of manager Roy Hodgson's tenure — he confirmed after the game he wouldn't be seeking to extend his contract and take the team for its 2018 World Cup qualifiers.