World Cup LIVE: England vs Tunisia latest score; Harry Kane nets stoppage time winner | Football | Sport

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England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updatesREUTERS

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updates

England look in fine fettle heading into tonight’s Group G encounter in Volgograd, thanks to seamless, injury-free preparations that have brought hope and no shortage of excitement.

The eyes of the nation will be focused on the Volgograd Arena when Gareth Southgate’s exciting young side take to the field in their first major tournament match since the humiliating Euro 2016 exit to Iceland.

Tunisia ended their 12-year absence from the world’s biggest sporting event after navigating through a rather weak group of Libya, Guinea and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

ENGLAND 2-1 TUNISIA – KANE (11, 90), SASSI (34)

England XI: Pickford, Walker, Stones, Maguire, Lingard, Henderson, Trippier, Young, Alli, Sterling, Kane.

Tunisia XI: Hassen, Meriah, Syam Ben Youssef, Bronn, Maaloul, Skhiri, Badri, Sassi, Fakhreddine Ben Youssef, Khazri, Sliti.

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updatesREUTERS

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updates

TWITTER ROUND-UP

Maz: Harry Kane is the man… Great start to our World Cup campaign. Well done lads. Fought right until the end.

Janine: Amazing what Harry Kane can do when he’s not being wrestled to the ground! Come on England you beauts!

Tom: Normally I’d feel sorry for a team that gutted, who defended so well. But today, Tunisia can absolutely do one (and take that disgrace of a ref with them while they’re doing it).

Alan: Well deserved. Despite one of the most inept refereeing performances I have witnessed.

ENGLAND 2-1 TUNISIA

FT: It’s all over! England have opened their World Cup qualifying campaign with a win at the death over Tunisia. Harry Kane delivers!!!

ENGLAND 2-1 TUNISIA

93: Now it’s England’s turn to slow things down. Tunisia have had the stuffing knocked out of them.

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updatesREUTER

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updates

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updatesGETTY

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updates

ENGLAND 2-1 TUNISIA – KANE

91: YESSSSSSSSSSS!

Cometh the hour, cometh captain Harry Kane!

The corner is sent into the penalty area where Harry Maguire flicks it over to Kane, who nods beyond the goalkeeper and sends England into ecstasy.

Gareth Southgate went crazy on the touchline.

90: Four minutes of injury time. It’s been a World Cup of late goals and penalties. Both would be welcome right now…

89: Blimey. Ruben Loftus-Cheek does brilliantly to turn his marker at the byline but Rashford stutters and completely misses his cutback.

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updatesREUTERS

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updates

87: So, we enter the final stages and a winning goal looks unlikely. Tunisia are the definition of anti-football and using every trick in the book to slow play down.

85: Marcus Rashford finally has some space to run. He reaches the byline and wins a corner. John Stones rises highest but collides with the Tunisia goalkeeper and a free-kick is awarded. Did Ben Mustapha get up immediately? Of course he didn’t. Precious time ticking away with the medical staff on the pitch.

83: Tunisia are quite clever with these needling little tackles to ruin England’s fluency. It’s working.

80: Ashley Young steps up… over. The Manchester United left-back was a bit tentative with that one.

Here comes Ruben Loftus-Cheek! He replaces Dele Alli for the closing stages.

79: Harry Maguire now playing as a left winger, folks. Vintage stuff.

Is this the moment? Jesse Lingard is floored and England have a free-kick just outside the penalty area. It couldn’t be better positioned.

76: This is difficult to watch right now. England look a bit dispirited and have run out of ideas. One moment of magic required and perhaps someone switches the VAR machine on…

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updatesREUTERS

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updates

73: Marcus Rashford gestures for the England side to raise the tempo. Tunisia are pinned inside their own half but we’ve not created too many problems for substitute goalkeeper Ben Mustapha. 41,064 attendance, if anyone cares.

70: Kieran Trippier appears to have assumed free-kick duties. He might not get the next one having guided a 25-yard effort wide.

69: There goes Raheem Sterling. He’s replaced by Marcus Rashford. Time to shine, Marcus!

66: Nearly. Harry Maguire, who’s effectively a striker at the moment, stretches to reach a deep cross but the ball just alludes the big man’s toes.

Jamie Vardy and Marcus Rashford are warming up.

63: England are struggling to escape the attentions of this extremely persistent Tunisia defence. Everything needs to be quicker and perhaps a few substitutions. No movement from the bench yet.

60: John Stones and Harry Maguire are pushing further forward and giving England extra strength in midfield. It’s working as Kieran Trippier delivers a corner that Harry Kane guides back into the area but nobody can apply the finish.

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updatesREUTERS

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updates

57: Tonight’s referee, who’s dished out six red cards in his last nine games, is ranked seventh in world by FIFA. No chances to speak of.

54: The game is slightly getting away from England at the moment. It’s drifting. None of the same buzz from the first half.

51: See! Raheem Sterling pressurises Meriah into a mistake and England have a corner. Tunisia clear but the referee completely misses ANOTHER obvious penalty.

Harry Kane is wrestled to the floor in exactly the same manner as the first half and neither referee Wilmar Roldan Perez or VAR do anything. Not a thing.

48: England have started noticeably slower than they did in the opening 45 minutes. Less pressing up the field and that’s giving Tunisia more time on the ball.

I would like to see more aggression from the Three Lions.

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updatesREUTERS

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updates

ENGLAND 1-1 TUNISIA

45: And we’re back underway. Dele Alli, despite moving gingerly, remains on the field. Now can we have a few decisions go our way please?

REPLAYS…

HT: The replay of Harry Kane being wrestled to the floor doesn’t get any better. The Tunisian defender isn’t looking at the ball and wraps his arms around Harry to bring him down.

TWITTER ROUND-UP

Oliver: England way too profligate in front of goal but overall message from that first half has to be good. Pace and energy fantastic. Just make the chances count second half.

Stan: Dominated first 25, Could have had 3, need that ruthless streak as every team will have a spell at some stage. If Tunisia’s is a penalty, so is the tackle on Kane.

Uche: Missed chances, complacency and schoolboy errors have killed England in past tournaments. Sterling, Lingard, Maguire and Walker need to wake up fast.

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updatesREUTERS

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updates

ENGLAND 1-1 TUNISIA

HT: Well, somehow we’re level at the break. England completely dominant for long periods but you’ll be punished for a lack of clinical finishing at this level. I personally felt the penalty was harsh, but perhaps Kyle Walker shouldn’t have given the referee the opportunity to award the spot-kick.

What exactly is VAR doing? Harry Kane was wrestled to the floor and nothing given.

45: It’s starting to feel like one of those nights. Three minutes of added time.

44: Woodwork! This is getting beyond a joke. Kieran Trippier spots the run of Jesse Lingard, who prods it beyond the goalkeeper and watches it strike the post.

42: Another update, another last-gasp block from Tunisia. Again Harry Maguire wins the header with three defenders marking him and Jesse Lingard’s half-volley is deflected over.

40: It looked like Dele Alli was suffering with a thigh injury but he’s battling on. Fabian Delph is waiting in the wings if he can’t continue.

37: England have to reset, and a free-kick on the left flank could be the perfect opportunity.

Close! That was agony. The delivery is turned onto the crossbar by Harry Maguire and falls kindly for Harry Kane, who scuffs his shot. The Tottenham striker is clearly thrown to the floor by a Tunisia defender but for some unknown reason, VAR isn’t checked and play continues.

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updatesREUTERS

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updates

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updatesREUTERS

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updates

37: England have to reset, and a free-kick on the left flank could be the perfect opportunity.

Close! That was agony. The delivery is turned onto the crossbar by Harry Maguire and falls kindly for Harry Kane, who scuffs his shot. The Tottenham striker is clearly thrown to the floor by a Tunisia defender but for some unknown reason, VAR isn’t checked and play continues.

ENGLAND 1-1 TUNISIA – SASSI (PEN)

35: Ferjani Sassi steps up… scores. The Tunisia midfielder tucks it to Jordan Pickford’s right, and despite getting a touch, we’re level.

PENALTY TO TUNISIA

33: You’ve got to be joking! Referee Wilmar Roldan Perez has penalised Kyle Walker for a trailing arm on Ben Youssef. It’s soft, very very soft.

32: It’s quite nice to see England showing bundles of energy and work rate. The second they lose the ball they’re like… flies at the Volgograd Arena…

30: Half-hour gone and England are still in control. A couple of moments of panic haven’t been enough to tarnish a positive opening from Gareth Southgate’s side.

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updatesREUTERS

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updates

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updatesGETTY

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updates

27: Jordan Pickford is quickly off his line to meet a hopeful long ball to Sunderland’s Khazri.

Hearts in mouths! Harry Maguire loses possession in his final third and Tunisia attack. The Leicester star recovers to poke the ball away from Fakhreddine Ben Youssef. Kyle Walker attempting to turn inside his own area wasn’t a pleasant experience. No more of that please, Kyle.

26: Should be 2-0. Young plays a delicious looping cross to the far post where the unmarked Lingard shanks a volley wide of the post. He had time to head it, square it or take a touch…

25: A bit of confusion between Lingard and Young results in a Tunisia corner, from which Sliti rockets into orbit.

23: I don’t want to jink it, but I’m going to. England are playing some of the best football we’ve seen at this year’s finals.

The Three Lions are pressing as a unit, there’s slick passing and tons of movement off the ball. Long may it continue.

20: Another wonderful move from England with Alli finding Trippier in space on the right flank. He drills one low into the area and Henderson arrives late to volley straight at Ben Mustapha.

18: Tunisia lose goalkeeper Hassen to injury after two very tough saves. He walks off in tears and Ben Mustapha replaces him.

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updatesREUTERS

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updates

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updatesPA

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updates

15: Harry Kane has scored his first England goal at a major international tournament, with what was his 15th shot overall (13 in the Euros, 2 in the World Cup).

13: The Tunisia goalkeeper Hassen can’t continue. He’s been clutching his arm for a while and finally hits the deck with the medical staff rushing on.

ENGLAND 1-0 TUNISIA – KANE

10: We have lift-off!

Ashley Young swung it in from the left, John Stones produced a powerful header and when Hassen made a fine one-handed save it merely landed at Kane’s feet. The skipper needed no second chances as he slotted home for the first time at a major tournament.

We are creative enough, we are positive enough…

8: How?! Dele Alli plays a no-look reverse pass over to Jesse Lingard, who squares it across goal. Sterling looks certain to score but he’s fluffed it. I think his blushes might have been spared by the offside flag.

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updatesGETTY

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updates

5: Close! Oh my word that would have been a start. Raheem Sterling nearly converts a low cross from Alli before Lingard’s snapshot is clawed off the line by Hassen.

Positive. Very positive start indeed.

4: Oooohh, the nerves are most certainly in the Tunisia camp! Having buckled under an England press, goalkeeper Hassen knocks it straight out of play.

2: How are those nerves folks? I’ve got a serious case of sweaty palms going on. Not ideal for typing. England are dressed from head to toe in red.

ENGLAND 0-0 TUNISIA

1: And we’re off! Let the mayhem begin…

Given the fact England’s defence tonight is almost entirely from Yorkshire, I’d expect it to give Tunisia absolutely nothing.

THE ANTHEMS

18:57: The England lads have a quick spray of the insect repellent before lining up for the national anthem.

Tunisia’s is quite a light and bouncy number. Every single England players sings the national anthem, with a special mention to Jordan Henderson who belted it out.

THE PLAYERS ARRIVE!

18:54: Both sides have emerged from the tunnel to a reasonably full Volgograd Arena. There’s something like two or three thousand travelling England supporters here tonight, but they’ve making one hell of a noise.

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updatesREUTERS

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updates

THE FINAL COUNTDOWN…

18:50: We’re almost there. Brew the tea, grab a snack and emotionally prepare yourself – England are playing.

Incidentally, National Grid is preparing for a 500 megawatt jump in electricity across the UK at half-time between England and Tunisia. That roughly translates to 23 million fridge doors opening at once.

That has absolutely no relevance but I thought you might like to know why your lights switch off in around 55 minutes time.

HARRY THE CAT

18:48: Moving seamlessly from Dachshund’s to cats… apparently Harry Kane was quite the goalkeeper as a youngster.

He was put between the sticks at his local club before his dad told the manager that he was better outfield. Jordan Pickford will be thanking his lucky stars…

PAWS FOR THOUGHT…

18:45: This is one way of predicting a winner.

One of the Russian television channels had a dachshund pick the winner between England and Tunisia by making it choose between roast beef and couscous.

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updatesREUTERS

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updates

SOUTHGATE SPEAKS

18:41: England boss Gareth Southgate has just delivered a typical measured interview ahead of tonight’s opener. He says that he’s looking forward to seeing his young players perform.

Asked who would be delivering the final speech before they emerge from the tunnel, he revealed that he would be doing it himself. Inspire them, Gareth!

LUCKY SHINPADS!

18:37: Now I didn’t expect to be writing this sentence tonight.

Dele Alli has been discussing his lucky mascot ahead of England’s World Cup opener against Tunisia.

Yep, I said shinpads.

While talking to BBC pundit Gabby Logan, Alli revealed he’s been wearing the same shinpads since he was 11 and they’ve never been washed. Lovely stuff…

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updatesREUTERS

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updates

TWITTER ROUND-UP

Mayor of London: Best of luck to England in their first World Cup match tonight! London is behind you!

Jules: What a World Cup it’s been already. Belgium have set the standard for Group G but now it’s our turn. After seeing some of the big guns drop points in their opening matches, anything is possible at this World Cup Come on England!

Brad: As I buttered my toast this morning and stirred my cuppa. Something felt different. It was when I turned to my 4 month old daughter and she nodded her head. That moment I knew… It’s coming home!

I like your style, Brad. Perhaps don’t make ALL your decision based on the nod of your four-month-old daughter though…

FLIES…

18:29: Yep, It wouldn’t be England at a amor tournament if there wasn’t a bizarre reason for us NOT to excel.

And this time… it’s a plague of flies.

Not much Gareth Southgate can do about that. Supporters and locals are being bothered by the small flying insects and the England players will be doused in fly repellent.

Just watching the warm ups, and the Three Lions players are being bothered. Raheem Sterling is particularly animated. There are thousands of them!

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updatesREUTERS

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updates

HARRY KANE > CRISTIANO RONALDO

18:25: Perhaps the England captain hasn’t quite reached the heights of Cristiano Ronaldo, but he’s dreaming of his own goal spree against Tunisia tonight.

Ronaldo turned in a classic performance with a superb hat-trick as Portugal drew 3-3 with Spain on Friday, instantly turning up the heat on the rest of the tournament’s top marksmen.

Kane happily ranks himself in that elite group and is eager to start chasing down the Real Madrid star.

“For sure, he’s put me under a bit of pressure. He’s a fantastic player who had a fantastic game,” said Kane. “Hopefully I will score a hat-trick tomorrow and we’ll both be level. But it’s not something I’ll be thinking about until later in the tournament. It’s about concentrating on the team.”

YOU SEEN THIS?

18:21: Those people at the BBC have created a three-minute video depicting how the nation would respond to England winning the World Cup.

They’ve pulled in a few favours from news presenters, the fella from the Lightning Seeds and Danny Dyer to leave expectation at boiling point. See what you think, I’ve posted it below.

YOUTH

18:17: Well here’s a statistic that Alan Hansen wouldn’t have appreciated.

England’s starting line-up has a cumulative total of 248 caps between them; the lowest by an England starting XI in an international tournament since June 1962 (246 caps vs Bulgaria).

Can’t win anything with kids, right Alan? We’ll see…

‘AN EXCESS OF CONFIDENCE’

18:15: Isn’t that the best way of calling somebody cocky? An excess of confidence is my new mantra and I’ve got former Tunisia captain Radhi Jaidi to thank for it.

The Southampton assistant coach and 105-capped Tunisia international conceded that England’s “new mentality” makes them dangerous opponents.

But also sent a warning. He said: “Probably all that can go against the younger boys is an excess of confidence because they’re playing against Tunisia.”

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updatesREUTERS

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updates

HARRY

18:13: Harry Kane has been the Premier League’s market-leading finisher for four years, during which he has finessed his end product and built an enviable CV.

The one notable omission is a lack of goals in summer tournaments – with the Spurs striker drawing a blank at the Under-21 European Championship and then again with the seniors at Euro 2016.

Now he is captain, he must shoulder the burden and has welcomed the rising expectations with open arms. With 13 goals in 24 caps, the shirt clearly doesn’t burden him – so can he seize the moment in Russia?

IT’S COMING HOME!

18:10: What kind of host would I be if I didn’t provide you with a link to the greatest football anthem of all time before kick off.

HAVE YOUR SAY

18:05: If you want to vent your frustrations, or discuss any issues in the world of football (within reason), then get in touch!

You can either comment at the bottom of the page or contact me via Twitter using the hashtag #ExpressSport.

TEAM NEWS – ENGLAND

18:00: Ok you lucky rascals, you now have my full attention. I’ve just been watching Belgium knock three past Panama – and now it’s England’s turn to respond!

Harry Kane captains a side containing nine World Cup debutants as Gareth Southgate’s men prepare to get their tournament under way against Tunisia in Volgograd.

Of the starting XI only Jordan Henderson, preferred at the base of midfield to Eric Dier, and Raheem Sterling have played on this stage before, sharing five appearances in Brazil four years ago.

Goalkeeper Jordan Pickford is making his competitive bow, having only appeared in three friendlies to date, with Harry Maguire edging Gary Cahill for a place in the back three.

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updatesTWITTER

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updates

THE TEAM ARRIVES!

Gareth Southgate has named his starting XI and there’s one or two surprises. Harry Maguire starts alongside John Stones and Kyle Walker in defence.

Raheem Sterling is also given the nod ahead of Marcus Rashford. Harry Kane leads the line with Dele Alli, Jesse Lingard and Sterling in support.

More to follow after the conclusion of Belgium’s clash with Panama.

England XI: Pickford, Walker, Stones, Maguire, Trippier, Alli, Henderson, Lingard, Young, Sterling, Kane.

Subs: Butland, Rose, Dier, Vardy, Welbeck, Cahill, Jones, Delph, Rashford, Loftus-Cheek, Alexander-Arnold, Pope.

OPENING-DAY NERVES?

England have not won their first fixture at a major tournament since 2006 when they edged Paraguay in Frankfurt.

They have since drawn with the United States, France and Russia as well as losing to Italy at the last World Cup.

Nerves in the curtain-raising fixture are not restricted to the Three Lions, of course, but their record could certainly do with some polishing. Three points would go a long way to affirming the squad’s serene preparations as well as paving the way to the last 16.

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updatesREUTERS

England vs Tunisia: Live World Cup score, goals and updates

WELCOME

Hello everyone, welcome to our LIVE coverage of the World Cup.

Take a deep breath, exhale slowly and ready yourself because England are about to get their 2018 World Cup campaign underway.

It’s the usual cocktail of emotions.

Anxiety, excitement, nausea, anticipation and a large helping of cautious optimism.

It’s known as the England Special in most establishments…

Gareth Southgate has told England’s young squad to attack the World Cup unburdened by their forerunners’ failings.

We’re about to find out if they will!



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