England and Wales get their Group B campaigns underneath manner in opposition to Iran and USA respectively on Day Two of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.
2018 semi-finalists, and Euro 2020 runners-up England kick off the day’s motion in opposition to Iran as Gareth Southgate’s crew look to go one step additional and clinch a senior males’s trophy for the primary time since 1966.
After Senegal and Netherlands conclude the primary spherical of Group A matches in Doha, Wales make an historic first World Cup finals look since 1958 after they tackle USA in Al Rayyan.
World Cup fixtures – November 21
- England v Iran – Group B, kick-off 1pm
- Senegal v Netherlands – Group A, kick-off 4pm
- USA v Wales – Group B, kick-off 7pm
England won’t have James Maddison or Kyle Walker obtainable, with each gamers carrying accidents into the event. Kalvin Phillips – who additionally had questions marks over his health heading into the World Cup – is out there.
Gareth Southgate mentioned: “When it comes to participant availability, everyone is out there bar James Maddison for tomorrow.
“It is a bit bit early for Kyle Walker however he’s coaching with the crew, in order that’s forward of the place we thought he is likely to be at this stage. Very optimistic. We’re wanting ahead to this problem and I’ve actually appreciated the way in which the gamers have approached coaching this week.”
Iran’s most notable absentee is skilled midfielder Omid Ebrahimi as a consequence of a groin damage, however Bayer Leverkusen striker Sardar Azmoun is a part of the crew regardless of tearing a calf muscle final month.
Ehsan Hajsafi will put on the captain’s armband as he prepares to make his 122nd look for Iran, whereas Brentford’s Saman Ghoddos can be within the squad.
wales won’t threat Joe Allen in opposition to the USA. The midfielder hasn’t performed since September after injuring his hamstring – and a return for the opening recreation remains to be too quickly.
“We mentioned from the beginning we will give each doable likelihood that we are able to to get him to play that first recreation, he is most likely not going to make it,” mentioned Rob Web page.
“We may have pushed him but when he breaks down then he is undoubtedly out of the event, not to mention the second recreation. Threat and reward. We might have appreciated him for the primary recreation, however we’re not going to push him to the purpose of fully shedding him.”
USA head coach Gregg Berhalter named Leeds midfielder Tyler Adams captain for the World Cup on the eve of their opener in opposition to Wales.
The 23-year-old is the youngest captain by a distance at this 12 months’s event, with England’s Harry Kane the one different skipper underneath the age of 30 in Qatar.
The duty has rotated between a number of gamers all through Berhalter’s tenure, with Adams, Christian Pulisic, Weston McKennie and Walker Zimmerman all having held the function for the reason that begin of World Cup qualifying. Adams wore the armband in seven of his 12 appearances throughout that interval.
Senegal suffered an enormous pre-tournament blow with Sadio Mane dominated out of the World Cup as a consequence of a leg damage he sustained whereas taking part in for Bayern Munich.
Mane was named in Senegal’s 26-man squad for the World Cup however the former Liverpool ahead won’t characteristic in Qatar after being unable to get better from the damage.
Memphis Depay can even miss out on the Netherlands’ opening World Cup recreation. The ahead harm his hamstring taking part in within the Nations League in September, however instructed reporters he was match to play after collaborating in coaching.
“It will likely be a blow for us identical to Sadio Mane lacking for Senegal is a blow for them,” Van Gaal mentioned of Monday’s Group A conflict in Doha.
Iran carrying weight of protests at World Cup
Iran begins their World Cup marketing campaign on Monday underneath the glare of a political highlight. Whereas England’s gamers might be targeted solely on efficiency, Iran’s can have way more on their minds. Some argue they shouldn’t be there in any respect.
Their participation comes at a time of immense turbulence in Iran, the place nationwide protests triggered by the demise of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini in police custody in September have been met with a bloody response by the ruling regime.
Amini died after being arrested by the regime’s so-called morality police for an alleged breach of their Islamic costume code, her plight intensifying long-standing emotions of anger and resentment across the oppression of girls’s rights within the nation.
Not less than 348 protestors have been killed to date, in accordance with human rights monitoring teams, whereas an extra 15,900 have been detained. Earlier this week, a courtroom in Tehran, Iran’s capital, issued the primary demise sentence to an individual arrested for collaborating.
Iran’s involvement within the World Cup feels incongruous to many given the context. There have even been requires them to be barred from the event. However the focus is now turning to how their gamers will act in Qatar amid anticipated demonstrations off the pitch.
Learn extra on the state of affairs surrounding Iran forward of their World Cup opener HERE
Van Gaal’s final stand: Netherlands boss doing it his manner
The Netherlands squad choice has sparked debate within the build-up to the World Cup in Qatar. It’s an eclectic combine that might solely have come from the thoughts of Louis van Gaal. The error can be to assume this implies it’s not going to work.
“Louis has a really clear opinion of how he desires his crew to play and the system that he desires to play,” Frans Hoek tells Sky Sports activities. “He had been watching the nationwide crew from a distance and had an excellent view of what was obtainable and what was not obtainable.”
Very similar to Van Gaal, there’s an insistent tone to Hoek’s voice, a way that makes you imagine that one thing others would think about outlandish is actually solely logical. Very similar to Van Gaal, his long-time goalkeeper coach has the credentials to again it up.
Learn extra from Adam Bate’s interview with Frans Hoek HERE
Opta stats: England set-piece specialists, USA’s leaky protection
- England are the one European crew to have reached the semi-finals in every of the final two main tournaments (FIFA World Cup + EURO).
- 12 of England’s final 18 targets on the FIFA World Cup have been scored from set-pieces. Actually, 75% of their targets in 2018 got here from lifeless ball conditions (9 out of 12).
- This would be the first ever encounter between Senegal and the Netherlands. The Dutch are unbeaten in opposition to African opposition on the FIFA World Cup (W3 D1), while Senegal have by no means tasted defeat when dealing with European opposition within the group section of the competitors (W2 D1).
- USA have solely stored two clear sheets of their final 27 matches on the FIFA World Cup, conceding 46 targets within the course of. In distinction, USA had stored a clear sheet in three of their first six World Cup matches between 1930 and 1950.
- 9 of Wales’ 13 targets at their final two main tournaments (EURO 2016 & 2020) have seen at the least one in every of Gareth Bale or Aaron Ramsey concerned as goalscorer or help supplier.
Elsewhere on the World Cup
Belgium’s report goalscorer Romelu Lukaku educated aside from the squad on Sunday as uncertainty over his health continued to solid a shadow over the crew’s World Cup marketing campaign.
Lukaku, 29, has made two substitute appearances within the final 4 months at membership degree as he struggles with a hamstring damage and is unlikely to be prepared for Belgium’s opening Group F clashes in opposition to Canada and Morocco.
His state of affairs is being evaluated every day, and the target is to have him obtainable for the final group recreation in opposition to Croatia on December 1.
Karim Benzema has been dominated out of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar after tearing a muscle in his left thigh.
The Ballon d’Or winner, 34, got here into the event having suffered knee and hamstring accidents and had been coaching away from the French crew.
Saturday was Benzema’s first full coaching session and he was compelled to depart it early after feeling some ache in his left thigh, with the French Soccer Federation later confirming the striker had “a tear” that will rule him out of the event.
Goalkeepers are dealing with an ever harder process at World Cup tournaments because the balls journey more and more quick in flight and the brand new mannequin being utilized in Qatar is not any exception, in accordance with Uruguayan goalkeeper Sergio Rochet.
FIFA has mentioned that the brand new ball – named Al Rihla or “the journey” in Arabic – travels quicker than every other within the event’s historical past.
“Yr after 12 months, it will get higher for the strikers and for us goalkeepers it will get very powerful,” Rochet instructed reporters forward of Uruguay’s opening recreation in opposition to South Korea on Thursday. “This can be a very quick ball. We’re in a strategy of adaptation.”
Soccer followers should not be “visibly inebriated” or be shirtless at World Cup stadiums in Qatar, in accordance with organisers.
FIFA has ready a “stadium code of conduct” making use of to all 64 matches on the event within the Gulf state.
A bit advises ticket holders about their conduct on the stadium and runs via an inventory of issues they need to not do until “expressly licensed by the occasion organisers, the place applicable”.
Important Soccer: World Cup podcast
Take heed to episode two of the Important Soccer World Cup podcast as we talk about who will begin in England’s opening recreation in opposition to Iran and Gareth Bale’s health for Wales.