Defender Kyle Walker was not fit enough to play the opener due to a groin problem, but “he is back in contention”, said Jack Rathborn in the Independent. Doubts remain over James Maddison, who has missed training due to a knee injury.
USA duo Weston McKennie and Yunus Musah came off against Wales, but should be fit enough to start against England. Borussia Dortmund’s Giovanni Reyna will be hoping to force his way into the attack after “watching on as an unused substitute last time out”, said Oliver Thomas on SportsMole.
There are a host Premier League-based players in the USA ranks, including Brendan Aaronson and Tyler Adams of Leeds and Christian Pulisic of Chelsea.
England are “flying” after their rout of Iran and the United States, while “lively” against Wales, crumbled in the second half, said Jack Rathborn in the Independent. Southgate’s side will “have too much here” and edge the match to move to six points. Prediction: England 2 USA 1.
Southgate and Co head into Friday’s fixture in “buoyant mood” and as “firm favourites to claim maximum points”, said Oliver Thomas on SportsMole. There have already been “a couple shock results” at this World Cup, but the Three Lions will be “confident of success” and “should have few problems in securing a routine victory over their American counterparts”. Prediction: England 3 USA 0.
The Americans will prove “a tougher test” than Iran and Southgate will make sure England “do not get ahead of themselves” after scoring six for just the second ever time at a World Cup, said Alex Young in the London Evening Standard. Iran proved England “can be got at”, and USA certainly did as much against Wales. But the Three Lions’ “extra quality should shine through”. Prediction: England 3 USA 1.
Judging by previous USA results, “it’s hard to imagine they will find a way to spring an upset in this match”, said Kyle Bonn on Sporting News. “While they surely won’t end up battered like Iran, England will still find a way to breach the US backline.” Prediction: England 2 USA 0.
The bookies make England the “overwhelming betting favourites” to defeat the USA, said Tom Dodd on Oddschecker. England come into the game off the back of hammering Iran and the sportsbooks “don’t give the USA much chance of pulling off the upset”.
The 60,000-capacity Al Bayt Stadium in the city of Al Khor will host nine World Cup matches, including one quarter-final and a semi-final. Its design is inspired by the tents historically used in the Gulf region.