FIFA World Cup: Bukayo Saka scores brace as England thrash Iran 6-2 in Group-B clash
Bukayo Saka scored a brace as England ran out comfortable winners against Iran in their opening Group-B match. The Three Lions thrashed Iran 6-2 to get off to a perfect start in the FIFA World Cup in Qatar.
Saka celebrates his goal against Iran (AP)
By Rounaq Sehrawat: Bukayo Saka scored a brace as England ran out comfortable winners against Iran in their opening Group-B match. The Three Lions thrashed Iran 6-2 to get off to a perfect start in the FIFA World Cup in Qatar.
England were playing Iran for the very first time in competitive football, with the Asian side failing to register a win over any European opposition. England started the game off in the front foot, dominating possession and creating regular chances.
The game came to a stall when Iran goalkeeper Ali Beiranvand collided with defender Majid Hosseini while defending one of England’s attacks in the 15th minute. He was left bloodied but continued to play after receiving treatment on the field. However, he was unable to carry on playing and was stretchered off minutes later.
In the 35th minute, Borussia Dortmund teenager Jude Bellingham scored his first international goal to give England the lead at the Khalifa International Stadium. Bellingham climbed over the Iranian defenders to slot Luke Shaw’s cross in the back of the net.
Arsenal wunderkind doubled England’s in the 44th minute by firing from close range, right in the roof of the goal. Interestingly, 14 minutes were added to the first half due to Beiranvand’s injury.
Just minutes later, Chelsea forward Raheem Sterling joined the party by converting Harry Kane’s cross in fantastic fashion. The 27-year-old finished Kane’s cross at the near post with the outside of his boot to make it 3-0 in England’s favour.
In the second half, Saka doubled his goal tally in the 62nd minute by taking the ball at the edge of the box and driving in a low curler In the far side of the post. Iran pulled one back in the 65th minute through Porto striker Mehdi Teremi, who hit a first-time shot in the box to beat Jordan Pickford.
Manchester United’s Marcus Rashford came on in the 71st minute and scored just 26 seconds later to make it 5-1 in England’s favor. Rashford held the ball on the right side and slotted a cool finish past the goalkeeper.
Jack Grealish slotted the sixth goal for the Three Lions as they looked to cruise away with a comfortable victory. Teremi scored his second goal of the day from the penalty spot in the 10th minute of added time to make it 6-2 at the Khalifa International Stadium. England will now face USA in their next match on November 26.