England and Panama fans party until dawn

Ruben Hill
June 25, 2018

England captain, Harry Kane, is now the leading top scorer at the 2018 World Cup in Russian Federation.

Harry Kane has scored the most goals for England at a World Cup in 28 years, after netting twice in the first half against Panama.

Kane's treble helped England to thrash Panama 6-1 and move to the top of Group G ahead of Belgium, clinching a place in the last-16 in the process.

Stones opened the scoring with an excellent header eight minutes in, before notching a second from a clever free-kick routine - following in after Raheem Sterling had been denied from close range. "Not many players score a hat-trick in the World Cup, so I'm extremely proud of it". Kane scored another penalty just before halftime.

Asked if his captain could hit the heights of a Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo, Southgate said he had started "brilliantly" and praised him for staying mentally strong as he waited to take penalties while the Panamanian players argued. "We wouldn't swap him for anyone in the tournament in terms of No. 9s", Southgate said.

Panama's equal-sized army of red-shirted fans continued to dance and cheer on the "Canaleros" (Canalmen) to the end.

Incidentally, he is the first player to have scored a brace and a hattrick in his two consecutive world cup outings, after Gary Lineker in 1985 World Cup finals.

The English sang "football's coming home" in response to Panama's "ole, ole, ole". "I think [Ruben] Loftus-Cheek and [Marcus] Rashford really change the game late on and I think really driving forward and driving forward with a ton of pace is very important for England", Dunfield said. "What we did was to try to avoid a bigger catastrophe in the second half".

Southgate's task now will be to keep his young charges' grounded, and guard against complacency whomever they face next from Group H's quartet of Japan, Senegal, Poland and Colombia.

"I don't know how Gareth could send those lads out there and say, "We need to get a draw today" or "We need to get more yellow cards".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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