ENGLAND have been handed a dream World Cup draw after they have been drawn to face Belgium, Tunisia and Panama at Russia 2018.
Gareth Southgate’s aspect may hardly have hoped for a greater final result from the draw, which occurred on the Kremlin in Moscow.
With their place in Pot Two they might have been handed a nightmare qualification problem subsequent summer time, however as an alternative will now should be assured of progressing to the knock-out phases.
And in the event that they do attain the last-16, there are far worse opponents they might have confronted than Poland, Colombia, Japan or Senegal.
The Three Lions will start their marketing campaign on June 18 in Volgograd, the place they’ll face African qualifiers Tunisia, ranked 27th on the planet.
Panama – making their first ever look at a World Cup finals and ranked a lowly 56th – are second up on June 24 in Nizhny Novgorod.
That sort draw means England ought to be assured of already guaranteeing qualification earlier than they face high seeds Belgium in ultimate match.
Roberto Martinez’s aspect are probably the most fancied groups to win in Russia subsequent summer time, and they’ll meet England in Kaliningrad on June 28.
MAKE A DATE Full World Cup 2018 fixtures and kick-off instances
The draw with Belgium will present an intriguing conflict between gamers who’re team-mates and rivals within the Premier League.
Eden Hazard and Michy Batshuayi each play for Chelsea whereas Kevin De Bruyne and Vincent Kompany are star males at Manchester Metropolis.
Group G Fixtures
BELGIUM vs PANAMA – 4pm, Fisht Stadium (Sochi)
TUNISIA vs ENGLAND – 7pm, Volgograd Enviornment
BELGIUM vs TUNISIA – 1pm Spartak Stadium (Moscow)
ENGLAND vs PANAMA – 1pm, Nizhny Novgorod Stadium
PANAMA vs TUNISIA – 7pm, Mordovia Enviornment (Saransk)
ENGLAND vs BELGIUM – 7pm, Kaliningrad Stadium
Tunisia have didn’t qualify for the previous two World Cup tournaments, however got here by means of their qualifying unbeaten to safe a spot in Russia.
Panama certified for his or her first ever World Cup after they scored a last-gasp winner over Costa Rica within the ultimate match.
The best way the draw panned out, if England get by means of they’d face both Poland, Colombia, Senegal or Japan within the final 16.
We’ve been good at writing groups off after which getting overwhelmed by them haven’t we..
And there may be the prospect of a mouth-watering quarter-final conflict with Germany or Brazil additionally potential.
Going through Tunisia within the opening sport is a repeat of 1009, when Glenn Hoddle’s aspect got here away with a 2-Zero win in Marseille.
England boss Southgate was a part of the Three Lions squad that day, and he stated: “It was the very first thing that went by means of my thoughts.
“It was a incredible day as a participant, an excellent event, an unbelievable environment our followers made that day so it will likely be good to have the ability to relive that.
“We haven’t executed as a lot analysis on the African groups as but, clearly we haven’t needed to play them but, now could be the chance.
“It’s nice, we all know who we’re enjoying, the place we’re enjoying and now we are able to begin to focus in on that.
Solar Bets: Prime Value on 2018 World Cup outright winners
For the total listing of odds CLICK HERE
“We’ve been good at writing groups off after which getting overwhelmed by them haven’t we so we’ve bought to ensure we’re ready for all of these video games.
“I feel we have to give attention to the primary sport after which go from there. The target is to qualify from the group, you’re by no means fairly positive what number of factors you’re going to want for that .
“There can be ups and downs alongside the best way I’m positive so we have to be ready for all of these issues.
“Belgium are an impressive crew, they’re ranked the place they’re due to the standard of gamers they’ve bought.
“Since Roberto went there he’s executed an impressive job in order that is a fine quality opposition and an excellent sport to organize for.”
Former England captain Alan Shearer stated: “That brings again reminiscences of the opening sport in France 1998 once we performed Tunisia and gained.
“We have now six days relaxation after the primary sport, so if they’re fearful about journey distances that should not be an issue now.”
England’s final encounter with Belgium on the World Cup noticed one of many match’s best ever objectives scored.
The last-16 conflict in 1990 seemed to be heading for penalties earlier than David Platt hooked a shocking volley into the web within the final minute of extra-time to ship Bobby Robson’s aspect by means of.