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FIFA 2018: Captain fantastic Kane to the rescue as England beat Tunisia

20 June 2018

But despite the apparent inconsistencies from the referee, it was Kane who had the last laugh when latching onto Harry Maguire's flick-on. A scuffed shot from Jesse Lingard in the third minute set the tone, and by the time Kane opened the scoring seven minutes later it was little more than his side deserved.

Khazri, who cost £9 million but was oddly omitted by David Moyes during Sunderland's Premier League relegation season, scored nine goals in 23 Ligue 1 starts in 2017/18. It was this same hesitance to clear the ball which caused them the game.

"I can't stress enough the importance (of those goals)", Shearer said on BBC1's World Cup Match of the Day.

Early in their meeting last night, as Tunisia goalkeeper Mouez Hassen made a smart save to deny John Stones, the ball fell free in the box but there was no English striker to pounce on the rebound. A poacher's goal in his first World Cup match.

Trent Alexander-Arnold was an unused substitute for Gareth Southgate's men in Russian Federation.

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The evening kick-off in Volgograd on June 18th, which had a 69.2 per cent audience share at its peak, beat May's Royal Wedding . But if you don't take your chances it can come back to bite you, and England needed a very late victor from Kane in the end.

'It was tough but we played really well and could have scored a few more. Think about four years ago when Liverpool almost won the league under Brendan Rodgers...he was a box-to-box midfield player and Steven Gerrard was sitting in there. However, replays indicated that Kane maybe also had hold of Meriah's arm and was pulling the Tunisian down as much as the other way around. On every set piece, he was rugby-tackled by Tunisia defenders but Wilmar Roldan, the Colombian referee, never said anything. "It showed good character".

England have won their opening game at a major tournament since 2006, courtesy to a Harry Kane masterclass. We've got to recover well, we've got to prepare well and we've got to play as well, if not better, in the second game to win that.

However, the most impressive thing about Kane is his ability to always find a way to create just one more chance. In second-half, for example, it was nothing special.

He was fortunate that Jesse Lingard neither went down nor avoided the woodwork after tearing out to deny the Manchester United man in the second half, and was at fault for Harry Kane's late victor at his near post.

'Like I said, the celebrations... watching the celebrations back home, in the stadium, I have been part of that before when I was a kid watching football, so to see it and be part of it is wonderful'.

With the north Africans happy to take a 1-1 result, England looked as if they were going to pay for their lack of composure as the minutes ticked away.

FIFA 2018: Captain fantastic Kane to the rescue as England beat Tunisia