England have kicked their 2022 World Cup campaign off with a bang after thumping Iran 6-2 on Monday afternoon.
Gareth Southgate’s Three Lions, who travelled to the Khalifa International Stadium to take on Carlos Queiroz Iran, were at their rampant best.
Goals from Raheem Sterling, Marcus Rashford, Jack Grealish, Jude Bellingham and a brace from Bukayo Saka saw England thrash their Middle Eastern opponents.
The scoreline would have been a World Cup-equalling result had it not been for a dubious and soft last-minute penalty.
MORE: Video: Jude Bellingham scores England’s first goal of the 2022 World Cup with superb header
Nevertheless, now preparing to face USA on Friday in their second Group B game, England will know that a win will see them take a huge step toward qualifying for the prestigious tournament’s knockout phase, and super-agent Jon Smith believes that given today’s performance Southgate will make just the one change.
“The only change on Friday against USA, I think, will be Mason Mount out and Phil Foden in,” Smith said in an exclusive interview.
Although Mount was by no means the Three Lions’ weak link, Foden’s introduction offered Southgate’s side a new dimension but when it comes to standout performers there is only going to be one name on everybody’s lips.
Bellingham not only opened today’s scoring, but his overall performance was sublime, particularly his first-half display which saw him record 100 per cent passing statistics.
Jude Bellingham’s first World Cup half:
?? 40/40 passes completed
?? 10/10 passes completed in the final third
?? Second youngest English scorer at the World Cup
— Opta Analyst (@OptaAnalyst) November 21, 2022
Going on to assess what the future could have in store for Borussia Dortmund’s talented teenager, Smith said: “The player who is absolutely nailed on to start is surely Jude Bellingham though. ]
“After how he played today and at 19 years old, he looks set to be the world’s first £100m teenager. Phenomenal talent.”