England beat Panama side 6-1, powered by a Harry Kane hat-trick to seal qualification for the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia™ knockout stage, a result that booked Belgium’s Round of 16 berth too while eliminating Los Canaleros and Tunisia. Only top spot in Group G will be on the line when the Three Lions and Red Devils do battle next time out. A pretty flawless performance from Gareth Southgate’s side. A double from a centre back; a worldie from a young gun; and a hat-trick from the skipper. Job done.
Gareth Southgate’s team once again showcased their dead-ball prowess: two of their goals were penalties and a further two were headers from a corner and free-kick respectively. As for the Panamanians, they knew in advance that they would have to be clinical to stand any chance of getting something out of the game. Instead, they spurned the first two opportunities of the match and then promptly capitulated, finding themselves 2-0 down shortly after.
Although England were great, you can’t take away the fact that Panama were just as poor. They rarely troubled Jordan Pickford’s goal, although they did score a single consolation goal. They gave away needless penalties, gave the ball away far too often and were rather wreckless with their challenges.
Harry Kane becomes only the third Englishman to score a hat-trick in a World Cup, joining legends Sir Geoff Hurst and Gary Lineker. England will be disappointed not to have kept a clean sheet, but their six goals will give them some confidence going into their clash with Belgium. Panama will meet Tunisia in their concluding group game.
Here we go!
— FIFA World Cup (@FIFAWorldCup) June 24, 2018
England: J. Vardy (H. Kane, 63′), F. Delph (J. Lingard, 63′), D. Rose (K. Trippier, 70′)
Panama: R. Avila (A. Godoy, 63′), A. Arroyo (E. Bárcenas , 69′), F. Baloy (G. Gómez , 69′)
Referee: Ghead Grisha (EGY); VAR: Danny Makkelie (NED)