This year’s World Cup finally got underway on Sunday afternoon, with Qatar falling to a comfortable defeat at the hands of Ecuador in the opening match of the tournament at the Al Bayt Stadium. A brace from Enner Valencia saw Ecuador claim the spoils on a historic night for the host nation, who were unable to give their adoring fans something to cheer about in spite of their best efforts after a glitzy opening ceremony.
All eyes will now turn to Group B and England, who will face Iran in their first game this afternoon as they look to begin their campaign with a win over Carlos Queiroz’s side at the Khalifa International Stadium. Gareth Southgate is expected to name an attacking line-up for the match, with the likes of Kieran Trippier, Jude Bellingham, Bukayo Saka and Mason Mount set to start for the Three Lions, while there is said to be a chance that Harry Kane may be prevented from playing if he decides to wear the FA’s One Love armband despite FIFA having banned it from the tournament.
Wales will also be in action today against the USA as Rob Page’s men look to make their country proud in their first World Cup outing since 1958 on a momentous day for the nation. They will be desperately hoping that Gareth Bale can lead them to a hugely important victory at the Al-Rayyan Stadium, although they are likely to be tested by the Americans if they decide to field the likes of Christian Pulisic, Weston McKennie and Giovanni Reyna in their bid to break Welsh hearts.
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