England vs USA match preview: Who can colonize all three points in Qatar?
Fans will care less whether the game is called 'Football' or 'Soccer' when these sides meet, but more about who gets all three points at the Al Bayt Stadium.
The first day of the second round of group games at the 2022 FIFA World Cup will see the battle of the 'kings of the English language' slug it out at the Al Bayt Stadium in Al Khor.
For the English who defeated Iran 6-2, it will be a chance to capitalize on a solid start in the opening round and perform in such a way that they can begin to chant 'it's coming home', confidently.
For the Americans, they would hope that they can move past the disappointing 1-1 result they recorded against Wales, and grab their first win.
England vs USA Head-to-Head
Prior to this game, these nations' first-ever meeting at the World Cup came at the Brazil-hosted event in 1950.
The encounter saw the United States grind out a surprise 1-0 victory over England, and to date, is the only time USA have succeeded in keeping a clean sheet in the World Cup against a European nation.
Another meeting at the South Africa 2010 World Cup saw both sides share the spoils, with goals coming from Steven Gerrard and Clint Dempsey.
Away from the World Cup, England have won their last three meetings, winning the friendlies 3-0 (2018), 2-0 (2008) and 1-2 (2005).
England vs USA Match Form
England: W - D - L - L - D
USA: D - D - L - D - W
Players to watch
Bukayo Saka was a delight to watch in England's 6-2 thriller with Iran on Monday, scoring a goal in either half for the 1966 winners. Coming up against a United States side that have conceded at least a goal in three of their last five matches across competitions, Saka fancy the Americans as a good team he could use to increase his standing on the scorers' chart.
A bigger headache for the United States could be England's striker Harry Kane. For a player who is notorious for goalscoring, Kane's name was missing on the scoresheet against Iran, but his big chances created led to two goals for England. Should the Americans aim to particularly keep the Tottenham Hotspur man at bay, Kane has shown that to survive, he can shapeshift into another role the opponents might not expect from him.
Living up to his father's huge antecedents were the thoughts on Timothy's Weah's mind against Wales, and he gave a good account of himself with a fine goal. More interesting is the fact that the United States have never lost a match in which Weah had scored, something the Americans will want to bank on by feeding the 1995 Ballon d'Or winner's son with as many chances as possible.
Essential to the Americans on the other end of the spectrum will be 35-year-old Fulham defender Tim Ream who played a vital role in helping USA keep Wales out as they became more and more resurgent in their match last Monday. The work will, however, be doubled for him against an even more dangerous England.
Gareth Southgate (England)
After leading the Three Lions to a semi-final finish at the last FIFA World Cup in Russia in 2018, Southgate would hope he can take his team a step further - to the final - this term. Possibly two steps further - the final, and the trophy.
After the win in his side's first group game, the job is simple: secure qualification with a game to spare. Prior to the World Cup, Southgate had failed to win a game in six, drawing three and losing the other three.
Southgate on remaining competitive: "This is a good period for English football, we feel we can be competitive for many years to come and that's the aim - to have a sustained challenge in the later stages of the big competitions and we've not done that for years and years."
England vs USA Preferred formation: 4-2-3-1
Gregg Berhalter (United States)
Berhalter no doubt, has one of the best squads in the history of US men's football and will be expected to maximize their potential at this World Cup as he did at the CONCACAF Gold Cup in 2021. The rebuilding process has so far seen the former Hammarby and LA Galaxy head coach recruit some of the best talents - most of whom are capable of hurting England.
While his side might have failed to finish the job against Wales, Berhalter knows a repeat against England, could see his job come under heavy scrutiny after 4 years of preparation. His run into the World Cup has not been any convincing either, winning just three times in the last 10 matches (before Wales).
Berhalter on the USA not being the bigger side: "I believe that on our best day we can beat anyone in the world, anyone. It is a great honor to play in the World Cup, but we don't want to just be participants. We want to perform."
USA Possible formation: 4-1-2-3
England vs USA prediction
England should get a slim win from this one. USA might have a decent squad, but the English have a better one. I'd say, 1-0 England because the Americans are not ones to conceded a lot of goals.
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