Football World Cup: Harry Kane steals late win for England over Tunisia

England left it late to ensure a victorious start to their World Cup campaign, with captain Harry Kane's heroics securing a 2-1 win over Tunisia in their Group G clash in Volgograd.

Kane headed home his second goal in the 91st minute to ignite celebrations and ease the nerves among a vocal English faithful as the team made its first successful start to a major tournament since 2006.

It was a deserved goal which cashed in on England's prolonged dominance in both territory and possession after a Tunisia penalty had cancelled out Kane's first-half effort.

"So proud of the lads," said a relieved Kane immediately following the match. "I thought we played really well, especially in the first half, and we deserved to be ahead.

"We spoke a lot about togetherness and we've got a great bond off the pitch, so it's nice to see it working on the pitch as well."

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England played with plenty of purpose in the early stages, creating a number of early opportunities only to be denied by some scrambling Tunisian defence.

After a period of prolonged pressure the defence finally caved, Kane was on the spot to nudge home a deflection from a brilliantly-saved John Stones header in the 11th minute.

In the 35th minute, a rare foray by the Tunisians into enemy territory resulted in a foul by Kyle Walker in the box which was confirmed by the Video Assistant Referee (VAR) and duly converted by Ferjani Sassi.

The goal was the first by an African at the tournament so far and the only strike Tunisia managed to put on target the entire contest.

There was a reasonable argument to be made that it shouldn't have been the only time the VAR was employed. England would've felt hard done-by after Kane was twice near-tackled in the box without any consequence from above.

"I think there could have been a couple of penalties, especially when you look at their one," Kane agreed. "They were trying to grab a hold of us and trying to stop us running.

"Maybe it was a bit of justice at the end there to get one at the back post."

It was all England in the second half, pouring the pressure on a Tunisian defence which was forced to repell wave after wave of attack.

Defender Kieran Trippier was another of England's shining lights, providing a constant threat from the back.

The Spurs stand-out pushed forward on a number of occasions to create a total of six scoring opportunities, the most of any individual player through the early stages of the World Cup.

Ultimately, it was another corner that produced the match-winner, Kane on the end of another header from a corner at close range.

England will next face Panama on Monday (NZ time), where a win would almost guarantee their place in the round of 16.


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