Kane and England stars train with migrant workers
Check out the amazing moment England’s stars trained and played a game with a team made up of migrant workers in Qatar.
England vs Iran: Line-ups
England Set for 3 Points
A slice of unwanted history is also on the line for England here, as the Three Lions could fail to win seven games in a row for only the second time, having set that record all the way back in 1958, which would be a major blot on Southgate’s notebook as speculation over his post-World Cup future hots up.
England have also made a habit of winning one opening match at the World Cup and failing to win the next – prevailing on matchday one in 1998, 2006 and 2018 but coming up short in 2002, 2010 and 2014 – and Iran ought to play without any fear knowing that the pressure is firmly off their shoulders.
It will not come as too much of a surprise to learn that Iran have never progressed beyond the group stage of the World Cup in its current format, and they have only ever won two games in the tournament, one of which came against Morocco on the opening matchday at Russia 2018.
Team Melli warmed up for the 2022 World Cup with a 1-0 friendly win over Nicaragua last week before going down to Tunisia 2-0 on Wednesday – just their third defeat in their last 22 contests – but their World Cup goals-per-game ratio of 0.6 is the worst of any country to have played at least 10 matches at the tournament.
England and Iran will be locking horns for the first time on Monday, and Team Melli are aiming to secure their first win over European opposition at the ninth attempt, which would certainly send early shockwaves around Qatar early doors.
Iran’s attacking ranks may include some household names with plenty of international nous in front of goal, but we do not expect any surprises to be sprung on Monday afternoon. Desperate to dust off the cobwebs after a dismal Nations League campaign and with plenty of their own in-form attackers to call upon, England ought to begin their World Cup campaign with a routine three points.