Football

World Cup 2022: Saka and Kane singled out as England’s chief threats to USA

Iran faced the full fury of the English attack as they succumbed to a 6-2 thrashing on matchday one. Tyler Adams and company face the Three Lions next and have full knowledge of the threat Gareth Southgate’s men possess.

The quality of English players was praised by the American contingent, with Bukayo Saka and Harry Kane hailed as the difference makers by Team USA. Captain Kane turned creator against Team Melli while Arsenal youngster Saka got on the scoreboard twice.

American Matt Turner shares the dressing room with Saka at Arsenal and the goalkeeper was all praise for the 21-year-old attacker. Saka’s two goals would have helped him recover from his Euro 2020 penalty shootout heartache and Turner believes stopping him would be difficult.

The New Jersey native admitted that the USA pliers will have to give their best account to stop the Three Lions.. Having training ground knowledge about Saka’s prowess, he was unsure about the specific way his clubmate will score given the array of talents at his disposal.

“I think it will be difficult, he’s a top player,” Turner told the press. “They’ve got a squad of top players so I think we all know we’ll have to put in one of our best performances to beat them, that’s what we’re preparing to do and hopefully we’ll do that.”

“I think it’s pretty clear he’s one of the young stars of world football, he’s a top, top player and you don’t need me to tell anyone in our team the threat he poses in a game.

“He’s scoring goals in a variety of ways, he’s really developed, matured, gotten stronger, he’s a really, really good player who can change any game he takes part in.”

How do you stop Kane?

Turner is not the only American player well-versed with the English attack. DeAndre Yedlin was on the books of Tottenham and he was quick to hail Kane’s quality this week. 

The Inter Miami defender stated that the Tottenham captain is a ‘great player’ and stopping him from scoring is a tough task for anyone. He talked about how Kane continues to evolve with every passing year and his finishing ability is amongst the best in the world.

“From the second I got to Spurs, Harry Kane was always a great player,” the 29-year-old remarked about Kane.

“You could see he just kept improving, improving, improving, improving. One of the best finishers I played with and against.

“He just seems to be able to always find the back of the net and he’s the kind of player that people ask ‘how do you stop them? How do you contain him?’

“There’s not really a great answer for it – you just have to hope he’s not on his game that day, just really stay as tight to him as you can, not give him space,” he added. “Because if you do, then he’s going to find a way to put it in the back of the net.”

The last time Team USA faced off against England, they were thrashed 3-0 at Wembley. However, they held their own at the 2010 World Cup, earning a 1-1 draw in their group stage meeting.