England put on a commanding performance to easily defeat Senegal 3-0 at Al Bayt Stadium and advance to the FIFA World Cup (FWC) quarterfinals, maintaining their perfect record against African nations in the sport’s premier competition.
Although Boulaye Dia came close to breaking through and Bukayo Saka nearly stole the ball from Abdou Diallo in his own area, both Gareth Southgate and Aliou Cissé will have expected their respective teams to play with a lionheart.
After Stones blocked Dia’s initial shot, the ball dropped to Ismala Sarr, who missed the target from close range as Jordan Pickford collapsed at his feet. Senegal had the finest chance of the first half.
With a shot that skidded off the ground, Dia then compelled Pickford to make the game’s first significant save.
After enduring those unsettling moments, England demonstrated the ability to advance as a deft play ended when Jude Bellingham slipping the ball across for Jordan Henderson to calmly finish.
The Three Lions scored two goals in a span of 10 minutes after going two games without a goal in the first half. Bellingham advanced before handing the ball to Phil Foden, who neatly slid in Harry Kane for his 10th FWC goal assist.
At halftime, Cissé made three substitutions in response to the double blow, but they had little effect on the game’s momentum. England played with abandon, and Édouard Mendy had to make an uncomfortable stop off a vicious Kane shot.
Just a few seconds later, Foden left Youssouf Sabaly in his wake before setting up Saka for a beautifully dinked finish that provided Southgate’s side with additional comfort.
Senegal’s situation appeared to be hopeless when Pape Matar Sarr fired a hopeful free-kick that hit the side netting but never appeared to threaten Pickford.
Marcus Rashford’s late shot nearly found the back of the net, but it didn’t matter as the Three Lions advanced to the quarterfinals, where they will play France. The Three Lions have now kept three straight clean sheets while also matching their best-ever goalscoring campaign in this competition.
Senegal, which joined Nigeria and Ghana as the third African nation to qualify for the knockout stages on two separate occasions, came one game short of their greatest finish.