England got their World Cup off to a sensational start following a 6-2 victory over Iran at the Khalifa International Stadium in Qatar.
England scored their fourth, courtesy of Bukayo Saka’s solo effort in the second half before Mehdi Taremi pulled one back for Iran. Marcus Rashford then came off the bench to score England’s 5th in the 71st minute before Jack Grealish scored the 6th in the 90th minute.
Taremi did score his second in the injury time but that wasn’t enough to deny England a 6-2 win. In the first half, Jude Bellingham opened the scoring for England with a terrific header in the 35th minute, courtesy of a Luke Shaw cross.
Bukay Saka then doubled the scoring for England in the 44th minute. Two minutes later, Raheem Sterling scored the third for England.
Earlier, Gareth Southgate handed Bukayo Saka a place in England’s starting line-up and kept faith with struggling defender Harry Maguire as the Three Lions kicked off their World Cup campaign against Iran in Doha on Monday.
Arsenal forward Saka, who missed the decisive penalty in England’s Euro 2020 final shoot-out defeat against Italy, got the nod from Southgate instead of Manchester City’s Phil Foden and Manchester United’s Marcus Rashford. Iran were without key striker Sardar Azmoun after the Bayer Leverkusen star failed to recover from a calf injury that has kept him out since October.
Mehdi Taremi, the Porto striker who has impressed on the Champions League stage, was partnered by former Brighton forward Alireza Jahanbakhsh in the Iran attack.