2018 World Cup action continued, in Russia, on June 18, 2018, with the completion of play in Group F and the first round of matches in Group G. The early game saw Sweden defeat South Korea 1-0 on Andreas Granqvist’s penalty shot in the 65th minute and took a share of the lead in Group F with Mexico. Sweden’s penalty kick was awarded after a video review and was the second penalty kick awarded by Virtual Replay Assistant (VAR) technology in three days. Belgium handled Panama with three second-half goals and lead Group G with three points and plus-three goal differential.

The game saw England score late in the second half to secure a 2-1 victory and a crucial three points in the standings. Tunisia was close to drawing an unexpected point and like Morocco are disappointed to have zero points in the standings and a negative goal differential.

Belgium could contend

Belgium is ranked third in the world with a golden generation including Kevin De Bruyne, Eden Hazard, Dries Mertens and Romelu Lukaku, and are the favorites in Group H. They began their quest for a world title convincingly over out-matched Panama, making their first ever World Cup appearance. Belgium was held scoreless in the first half before breaking through in the 47th minute on Mertens’ penalty kick, opening the floodgates for Lukaku, who netted goals in the 69th and 75th minute to seal the win for the Red Devils.

Belgium against England later in during the Group Stage offers similar intrigue to Portugal v. Spain. Belgium will play Tunisia June 23, 2018, at 8 AM EST.

Harry Kane saves the day for England

England enters 2018 World Cup competition with high hopes after going undefeated in the first round of UEFA qualifying and earning an automatic berth to this year’s tournament.

Harry Kane, captain for England's 2018 team, opened the scoring in the 11th minute when he booted home a rebound off Tunisia keeper Mouez Hassen ever so softly into the right corner of the net to give England a 1-0 lead. Four minutes later, Tunisia would be forced to use a substitution when starting goalkeeper Hassen was injured in the 15th minute, inserting backup Farouk Ben Mustapha.

Tunisia was able to equalize in the 33rd minute on a penalty kick after England’s Kyle Walker fouled Fakhreddine Ben Youssef. The poor penalty and ensuing goal, tying the game 1-1, were a microcosm of events haunting England the past ten World Cups. Heading into the 90th minute, Tunisia looked the part to draw a tantalizing point in Group G when referees awarded approximately four minutes of injury time. Early in the 91st minute, Harry Kane struck again, this time on a header from the back post, giving England a precious 2-1 win and cementing himself as England’s most prolific star. Group G action continues in Russia June 23, 2018.