England were tested, but found their feet in the second half, piling on the goals to confirm a comfortable win.
Made in Manchester – England’s three goal margin was produced by United’s Marcus Rashford and City’s Phil Foden. The win confirmed England’s top-of-the-group finish, as Wales crashed out of its first World Cup in 64 years.
A solid first half from Wales was soured when Neco Williams was subbed out due to a head injury. Heading a powerful Rashford shot away, he suffered the consequences of a suspected concussion for nearly 10 minutes.
Williams was eventually substituted out, 10 minutes before the break, reluctantly leaving the field with his head in his heads.
Wales entered the break with a result still on the cards, yet they needed a big win to have any chance of progression.
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England mounted the ever-growing pressure in the second half, blitzing Wales early to set the tone. Within the first 10 minutes of the second half, England instantly blew out to a 2-0 lead.
Rashford scored the opener from a free-kick, opting to shoot toward the goalkeeper’s side rather than over the wall. He deceived Welsh keeper Danny Ward, as players tend to go over the wall. Rashford gave England the momentum to suddenly trounce the Welsh.
Foden doubled the lead, just one minute after England took it. Harry Kane’s low-driven cross met Foden on the far post who merely had to steer the ball into the back of the net.
Wales’ Daniel James almost dragged one goal back, after his curling effort went slightly wide of the goal frame. Happening only minutes after England’s two goals, it could have swayed the momentum drastically.
England soon made it three, via Rashford for a second time. Once again going alone, this time dribbling into the box and slotting it between the legs of Ward.
With that, the game was seen out by England, who eventually topped Group B, with seven points. The only country to steal points from them, the USA, finished second after defeating Iran.
As for Wales, their World Cup journey will mostly be remembered for them making the finals. With a disappointing group stage, it’s back to square one for the Welsh.
England will now face Senegal in the Round of 16, who proved they were no easy-beats. While USA will take on the Netherlands, who topped Group A in an undefeated fashion.
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