Tunisia overwhelmed by 'optimal striker' Harry Kane in late loss to England

Tunisia overwhelmed by 'optimal striker' Harry Kane in late loss to England

Kane opened the scoring in the 11th minute - his first goal at a major worldwide tournament - but Gareth Southgate's side were pegged back towards the end of the first half by Ferjani Sassi's penalty. There's no point in discussing how he played.

Players from both sides, but particularly those from England, spent an undue amount of time trying to ward them off during the match. "Perhaps, I'll understand. when I watch the replay at home", Maaloul told journalists. It showed good character to get on with it.

But England weren't and a controversial penalty - before more missed chances from John Stones and Jesse Lingard - somehow pulled Tunisia level by the break.

"I definitely didn't expect the manager to drop him against Slovenia and as soon as we all saw that we knew that that gaffer was not somebody to be messed around with", said Rose.

Just when it looked like the "Three Lions" were going to extend their disappointing run in World Cup tournaments, Kane stooped at the far post to head home in the 91st minute.

Instead they were opened up repeatedly by England early on, especially on the right flank with Kieran Trippier posing attacking menace with his pace and incisive crosses.

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Lampard: "England had obviously looked at the corners and how Tunisia defended them, and they have isolated their biggest centre-halves and best headers of the ball, then they have looked at winning second balls after that".

England almost re-took the lead a minute before the break when Lingard broke through on goal and managed to beat the keeper, but he saw his effort come off the post.

Kane's two goals here were flawless illustrations of the calm and predator's instinct that marks him out as special and took his England record to an outstanding 15 goals in 25 games.

"We've done it for a while [had good resilience] since the gaffer has been here - he's instilled it into us".

"I'm really proud. We did a lot of work on training field and were itching to play. We all sat here watching the game thinking they have to score, otherwise panic, anxiety, nerves settle in".

In this year's tournament, the draw put two of the four longest shots in the 32-team field in Group G - Tunisia and Panama - putting the expectation on England and Belgium to reach the knockout stage.

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