“Manchester connection” helps England finish on top of Group B

Manchester connection helps England finish on top of Group B

Three Lions’s FIFA World Cup campaign looks to be in a great shape as they finished the group stages at the summit of Group B. In their opening game, England faced an Iranian side under the guidance of Portuguese manager Carlos Queiroz and slammed the Asian side by 6 goals to 2.

The English side looked like a promising team filled with young as well as experienced players who play club football at the highest level and are capable of changing the course of any given match. During their opener against Iran, manager Gareth Southgate handed debuts to players like Jude Bellingham, Bukayo Saka and Jack Grealish and it certainly paid off.

All three of those were able to find the back of the net with Bellingham scoring the first goal in the 35th minute. Bukayo Saka scored a brace to become only the second player from Arsenal to score in a world cup game after Sol Campbell. Saka also became only the second player to score a brace at the World cup debut.

Chelsea forward Raheem Sterling entered the score sheet in the 45th minute to make it 4-0. Once the second half began, England were again on the run to score more goals and this time in the 70th Marcus Rashford scored a goal and last but not the least Jack Grealish, who came on as a substitute and found the back of the net in the 90th minute of the game.

The build-up to Jack Grealish’s goal had 35 uninterrupted passes, which is a record in FIFA World cup history. The only thing that went wrong by the end of an overall successful match was when England conceded 2 goals with Mehdi Taremi scoring both of those.

Gareth Southgate’s side met USA in their second group game and a very different side of the English team was on display. Their previous encounter against Iran was heavily dominated by them but against USA, England faced stiff competition.

USA had somewhat the same playing system as England and the former just could not get the final touch to score a goal. The match ended goalless as both teams shared a point each.

Last night, it was time for their final fixture at the group stage and they squared off against British side Wales. Gareth Southgate decided to drop Mason Mount and Raheem Sterling to hand Phil Foden his first FIFA World cup start and Marcus Rashford was also back in the starting 11 with Harry Kane functioning from the middle.

They played with a 4-3-3 formation against a Welsh side that lost its previous encounter against Iran by 2-0. The first-half remained goalless with England constantly threatening Wales and coming closer but failing to get the final output. The first breakthrough came with Marcus Rashford scoring a Free-kick from just outside the Wales box in the 50th minute.

A minute later, Phil Foden got into the score sheet after Rashford intercepted the ball from the Welsh defense which was collected by Captain Harry Kane and he sent it towards the far post for Phil Foden to score a tap-in from a tough angle.

Marcus Rashford scored another goal in the 68th minute to make it 3-0. England needs to be a little more clinical with the chances they get early on in the game to give themselves a cushion and put slight pressure to the opposition.

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