England had a flying start in their Qatar World Cup with a 6-2 victory against Iran.
45,334 fans were in attendance at the Khalifa International Stadium in Doha to watch the game between England and Iran.
It is worth mentioning that this was the first-ever encounter between the two teams, and the Islamic Republic has never before beaten the European opposition at the FIFA World Cup.
Unlike England, Iran was off to a bad start when goalkeeper Alireza Beiranvand got a concussion after a head clash with his team-mate Majid Hosseini.
In the 35th and 43rd minutes, Jude Bellingham and Bukayo Saka made their contributions to the final score. Thanks to Bellingham’s header and Sake’s fine strike.
Before the break, Raheem Sterling scored another goal for England with a classy volleyball from Harry Kane’s cross.
In the second half, Sterling assisted Saka who then scored twice. Iran was finally able to get their first goal in by Mehdi Taremi after 65 minutes, much to the delight of the Iran supporters, but only for England to respond relentlessly as substitute Marcus Rashford scored his first goal.
Jack Grealish scored in the 90th minute with a close-range strike following a good run.
In injury time, Iran got one back when Taremi converted a penalty after a foul from John Stones.
England Manager Gareth Southgate said: “It was a sticky first half, lots of stoppages, but we were a threat throughout that, our pressing was really good, and our movement was really good, so I’ve got to be happy, but we shouldn’t be conceding two goals at that stage of the game.
“I’m a miserable so and so, I should be more excited, but I’ve got to keep the team on the right track, and we will have to be better.”
Domestic Violence and the World Cup
Besides England’s great victory, there is still a serious issue that needs people’s attention.
In the year of the last World Cup, reports of domestic assaults causing injury in South Yorkshire increased by 1488%.
South Yorkshire Echo is now running the campaign “Blow the Whistle”, fundraising for The Young Women’s Christian Association this year to raise awareness and support victims of domestic abuse.
The group is raising money to build a new well-belling centre at Peile House for the victims.
If you are a victim of domestic abuse and cannot speak openly to the police on the phone, call 999 + DIAL 55 to send a silent message, reporting the abuse to the police.