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    Soccer News: England v USA: ‘Three Lions’ ready to handle despite Kane’s misgivings

    Harry Kane may be England’s key striker, but the threat that he could miss their second World Cup match against the United States may not have been as worrisome as it used to be.

    Three Lions captain Kane hobbled after a dominant 6-2 victory over Iran in the Group B opener.

    Kane provided two assists in this win but missed the scoresheet and England had no shortage of options in front of the net.

    The network was found by five different players; only in 2018, when Kane won the Golden Boot and became one of six goalscorers for England, were there more in the entire World Cup.

    Nine players scored goals, more than any team in the final since Yugoslavia against Zaire in 1974.

    Kane was expected to be ready for the game against the US, but Callum Wilson made an impact off the bench against Iran and scored his only international goal to date against next rivals England in November 2018.

    Jordan Pickford certainly didn’t care, as he cited Wilson as an example when he encouraged his teammates to step up.

    “I think everyone will take their chance,” he said. “When Harry pulled out about 70 minutes later, Callum came out and played really well.

    “[Wilson] got help for jack [Grealish]was very selfless and gave Jack his purpose.

    “I think everyone is training really hard, everyone is here for a reason – to play football.”

    However, the United States was not so ruthless as they drew Wales 1-1.

    Pickford’s team mate Matt Turner said: “I think one of the big things for us is that we missed some opportunities in the move against Wales in the second half.

    “We had moments where we just weren’t particularly clean in the last third. Maybe the pass was a little wrong, or the timing was wrong, and it robbed you of those little endings that you have in the World Cup, where the difference in goals scored is so small.

    “So I think we know we have to be better against England if we want to score goals.”

    England have won eight of their 11 games against the United States, but none of those wins have come in their two World Cup encounters. The USA won 1-0 in 1950 and drew 1-1 in 2010.

    PLAYERS TO WATCH

    England – Bukayo Saka

    Saka scored twice brilliantly against Iran, adding to Jude Bellingham’s first goal, making it the first example of two players aged 21 or under scoring in the same World Cup match for England.

    If Saka or Bellingham score again, they will become the youngest England player to score in consecutive finals. Saka definitely looked capable of adding to his score.

    USA – Timothy Weah

    George Weah never played in the World Cup but now his son Timothy did and he scored against Wales. It was his second goal in four caps, the same number as in his first 22 appearances in the United States.

    Weah Jr. will be in contention to be the third US player to score in the first two World Cup matches, as well as Burt Patenaude in 1930 and Clint Dempsey in 2014.

    FORECAST

    With or without Kane, supercomputer Stats Perform expects England to do well. They are given a 60.1 percent chance of winning two out of two in group B.

    However, the United States has a history of upsetting the Three Lions, even if the model rates them as underdogs at 18.8%. The 2010 draw repeat is estimated at 21.1%.

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