LONDON, England. March 31 (PSN) – In the third round of 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifying, the Poland national team were defeated 1:2 by England in London.
Final score: England – Poland 2:1
Since the opening whistle, the hosts were much more in control of the ball between the two teams and easily dominated the first 45 minutes.
In the 18th minute, after Raheem Sterling claimed the ball after a fatal turnover by Piotr Zielinski, he was then desperately fouled in the penalty area by defender Michal Helik – resulting in a penalty kick for the English.
Harry Kane stepped up to the spot and converted with a very sure shot to make it 1:0. Another deadly situation then arose in the 27th minute near the Polish net. After exchanging a few quick passes, the left flank saw an unmarked Sterling make another attacking run but this time in a 2-on-1 situation. Instead of shooting, the Manchester City player opted to pass to his teammate Phil Foden at the far post. However, the pass was blocked at the last second by lone defender Jan Bednarek, saving Paulo Sousa’s side from potentially trailing by two goals before the 30th minute mark.
Four minutes later, Wojciech Szczesny was called to make a great save to deny Harry Kane’s shot from outside the penalty area. Then just before the break, Sterling once again tested the Polish defence, this time beating Bartosz Bereszynski on the left side of the field to make a dangerous run into the penalty area. His effort was ultimately blocked, but this time by Helik.
After the break, things did not change significantly – at least not immediately. The hosts still had a decisive advantage and the Poles in turn had big problems in creating a any goal opportunities for themselves. Fortunately, after a few substitutions made by Sousa this began to quickly change, especially with the introduction of winger Kamil Jozwiak, whose presence once again made a major impact to the team. The bialo-czerwoni then began to play much better and even posed threat toward the English goal.
Eventually this paid off in the 58th minute, where John Stones lost the ball in front of his net after being pressured by Jakub Moder. A quick pass back from Arkadiusz Milik, and the 21-year-old midfielder confidently defeated Nick Pope with a good shot from an acute angle.
The English left it late but responded during a set-piece. After crossing from a corner kick and Stones’s ball tucked inside, Harry Maguire ended up firing home the game winner with a strong shot past Szczesny to make it 2:1.
Poland fought back to equalize, but their efforts didn’t pay off, especially when substitute Rafal Augustyniak blasted the ball far over the English net in the game’s final play.
After three matches thus far, Poland now currently sit 4th place in Group I with 4 points.
England – Poland 2:1 (1:0)
Goals: Kane 19′ (Pk), Maguire 85′ – Moder 58′
Yellow carded: Milik
Referee: Björn Kuipers (The Netherlands)
England: 1. Nick Pope – 2. Kyle Walker, 5. John Stones, 6. Harry Maguire, 3. Ben Chilwell – 8. Kalvin Phillips, 4. Declan Rice, 11. Mason Mount – 7. Phil Foden (86, 16. Reece James), 9. Harry Kane (89, 18. Dominic Calvert-Lewin), 10. Raheem Sterling (90, 14. Jesse Lingard)
Poland: 1. Wojciech Szczęsny – 18. Bartosz Bereszyński, 14. Michał Helik (54, 21. Kamil Jóźwiak), 15. Kamil Glik, 5. Jan Bednarek, 13. Maciej Rybus (86, 3. Arkadiusz Reca) – 20. Piotr Zieliński (86, 11. Kamil Grosicki), 10. Grzegorz Krychowiak, 16. Jakub Moder – 9. Karol Świderski (46, 7. Arkadiusz Milik), 23. Krzysztof Piątek (76, 6. Rafał Augustyniak)
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