England will look to kick off their 2022 World Cup campaign in style when they take on Iran in the Group B opener. The Three Lions are seen as favourites to win Monday’s clash, but the Iranians should not be written off just yet. Leicester City midfielder James Maddison has received a call-up, with Man City midfielder Kalvin Phillips cutting as well despite injury concerns.
As always, a man to watch in Gareth Southgate’s team will be Tottenham striker Harry Kane, who has netted 51 goals in 75 appearances for the England national team. The nominal visitors, on the other hand, will surely rely on Porto attacker Mehdi Taremi, who has been scoring goals for fun in all competitions this term. Anyhow, we predict that the star-studded Three Lions will emerge triumphant in their first-ever meeting with Iran at the showpiece tournament.
The Three Lions only ended their losing streak in the last game and were restricted to a 3-3 draw against Germany at home in Nations League. The terrible form of the front line has cost the team very much, keeping only one clean sheet in six attempts. England ended their Nations League campaign at the last of the table with only three points and will not be playing at the top level next year. The English squad for the World Cup is quite different from the one we saw in the Nations League but the team is far from being a real contender in this World Cup. Unless a miracle has happened and they suddenly start scoring goals, England should be out around the 1/8 or 1/4 finals max.
Team Milli faced Senegal in the last game and witnessed a 1-1 draw at the end, scoring an own goal for the opposition. Iran ended their World Cup qualification race at the top of the group winning, eight of the ten attempts. The team will have to be more focused on the front line that didn’t score more than one goal in the last three outings.
There is a ton of potential in this squad but the vast majority of players are young and still need more experience to be called World Class. We predict Kane, Rashford, and Saka upfront; Bellingham, Rice, and Foden in the midfield; Shaw, Maguire, Stones, and Walker in Defense, and Pickford on goal.
Iran announced their final squad for the World Cup and the biggest players in the country all made it in. The projected line-up for this game against England includes the 11 in a 4-3-3 formation. Abedzadeh is in goal; Moharrami, Kanani, Haji Safi, and Hosseini should be in defence; Noorollahi, Ezatolahi, and Sarlak in the midfield; Azmoun, Taremi, and Jahanbakhsh in the attack.
HIGHLIGHTED PLAYER (HARRY KANE):
Widely regarded as one of England’s best strikers at the moment, Harry Kane enjoyed a meteoric rise at Tottenham Hotspur, scoring 21 Premier League goals during the 2014/2015 campaign to be voted PFA Young Player of the Year.
The highly-rated striker went on to surpass that achievement the following season as he helped Tottenham Hotspur mount a serious title challenge for the first time in the club’s recent history and he made a seamless transition to international football. Kane scored four goals in his first ten appearances for England to prove he was here to stay and at the same time established himself as a first-choice striker in Roy Hodgson’s squad ahead of the Euro 2016 finals.
Kane is a modern striker, who is extremely dangerous in the opposition box, but it was some outstanding goals from distance as well as link-up play with teammates that earned him an excellent reputation in world football. Kane is expected to lead both Tottenham and England in years to come, that is if he can resist the lure of top European clubs that continue to cast admiring glances his way.
HIGHLIGHTED TEAM (IRAN):
The Iranian Football Federation was founded back in 1920. Team Melli played their first match not before August 1941, when they faced British India in Kabul. The Iranians emerged triumphant in the game (1-0) and two days later they played their first FIFA international match against Afghanistan. In 1968 the Iranians won their first trophy, with the team lifting the Asian Cup title.
The Iranians repeated the success four years later and, to make things even better, they won the 1976 Asian Cup trophy as well. Speaking of their participation at the FIFA World Cup finals, Iran booked their place at the showpiece tournament for the first time in 1978. Team Melli then missed the next four major tournaments before qualifying for the 1998 FIFA World Cup finals in France.
The Iranians participated in the 2006 and the 2014 tournaments as well and they did well to qualify for the 2018 FIFA World Cup finals in Russia. Iran footballers wear white shirts and white shorts when playing at home, while the colour of their away kits is red.
Our analysis of all available data, including recent performances and player stats, suggests the most likely outcome of this match is an England win with a probability of 57.37%. A draw has a probability of 22.6% and a win for Iran has a probability of 20.06%
England to win the Match.