World Cup fever continues with Monday's fixtures

World Cup fever continues with Monday's fixtures

England vs. Iran, Senegal vs. Netherlands, US vs. Wales matches to be played in Qatar

By Can Erozden

ANKARA (AA) – The 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar will go on with Monday's fixtures as the England vs. Iran, Senegal vs. Netherlands, and the US vs. Wales matches will be played on the second day of the tournament.

Group B heavyweights England, -- 1966 World Cup holders -- will play against Iran at Khalifa International Stadium in Ar-Rayyan.

The teams will face each other for the first time in an international competition.

England, who were the EURO 2020 runners-up and 2018 World Cup semifinalists, arrived in Qatar without Manchester United winger Jadon Sancho and Roma forward Tammy Abraham.

But high-profile stars like Harry Kane, Phil Foden, Bukayo Saka, Raheem Sterling, and Jude Bellingham are expected to shoulder the Three Lions in Qatar.

The English squad also includes Manchester City's Jack Grealish and Manchester United forward Marcus Rashford.

Iran are set to play in their sixth World Cup since Argentina 1978, when the Asian team made debut.

Sardar Azmoun and Mehdi Taremi are the Iranian stars that can make impact on the pitch against tough opponents.

Carlos Queiroz's men will be looking for a formula to stun England.

The England vs. Iran match will start at 1300GMT.

- Senegal vs. Netherlands

On Sunday, Enner Valencia-led Ecuador beat hosts Qatar 2-0 in the opening game of the World Cup to make a good start in Group A.

Senegal and the Netherlands are the other Group A competitors.

Senegalese star Sadio Mane cannot help the Lions of Teranga in their campaign in Qatar as the Bayern Munich forward was previously removed from squad due to an injury.

Chelsea goalkeeper Edouard Mendy and defender Kalidou Koulibaly are among the big names for Senegal. Both will play for their nation.

The Netherlands are seen as the favorites of this group as their squad includes several stars, including Liverpool defender Virgil van Dijk, Bayern Munich defender Matthijs de Ligt, Barcelona forward Memphis Depay, and midfielder Frenkie de Jong.

The Dutch have never won football's top prize, having lost in the World Cup finals three times – in 1974, 1978, and 2010.

The match at Doha's Al Thumama Stadium will begin at 1600GMT.

- Wales return to World Cup, ending 64-year drought

Wales are in the World Cup finals for the first time since 1958.

The US, their opponents in Group B, also returned after missing Russia 2018.

The Welsh national team amazed football authorities in the EURO 2016 when they reached the semifinals. They also made the last 16 in the EURO 2020.

Former Tottenham Hotspur and Real Madrid forward Gareth Bale, 33, remains the Dragons' star.

Wales established a squad full of young players alongside experienced members Bale and Aaron Ramsey.

The US are one of the countries having a big effect on world football with several young stars.

The Americans are hanging their hopes on a solid performance from Chelsea forward Christian Pulisic.

Also, Borussia Dortmund attacker Giovanni Reyna, Leeds United midfielder Brenden Aaronson, Juventus midfielder Weston McKennie, and AC Milan right-back Sergino Dest will be other the key players.

The US vs. Wales match will kick off at 1900GMT at Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium in Ar-Rayyan.

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