England vs Iran Preview - 2022 Qatar World Cup

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England and Iran badges with World Cup background

England will play their first match of the 2022 Qatar World Cup on Monday afternoon when they take on Iran.

RealSport101's Harry Smith is on hand to provide a comprehensive preview of Monday's 2022 Qatar World Cup battle, including team news, predicted starting XIs and predictions.

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England vs Iran Team News

England boss Gareth Southgate will likely opt for a 4-3-3 system on Monday afternoon against an Iran side that will sit back in a low block and attempt to frustrate the Three Lions.

This game will come too soon for right-back Kyle Walker who continues his recovery from groin surgery, while fan favourite James Maddison hasn't trained ahead of England's opener and won't feature.

Iran have just one injury concern for their opening game of the 2022 World Cup with Bayer Leverkusen striker Sardar Azmoun carrying a knock following November's Bundesliga action.

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The underdogs will set up in a 4-5-1 formation on Monday afternoon with Porto talisman Medhi Taremi the main goal threat in the attacking sphere. Former Reading midfielder Saeid Ezatolahi will anchor the midfield.

Confirmed Absentees

England: Kyle Walker, James Maddison

Iran: Sardar Azmoun (doubtful)

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Predicted Lineups

England (4-3-3): Pickford; Trippier, Maguire, Stones, Shaw; Rice, Bellingham, Mount; Saka, Kane, Sterling

Iran (4-5-1): Beyranvand; Moharrami, Hosseini, Pouraliganji, Mohammadi; Jahanbakhsh, Hajsafi, Noorollahi, Ezatolahi, Amiri; Taremi

England vs Iran Score Prediction

England will be keen to get their 2022 World Cup campaign off to a comfortable start against Iran after the Three Lions needed an injury-time winner to beat Tunisia on the opening day last time out.

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Much focus has been placed on the 'One Love' armbands ahead of kick-off on Monday, but Gareth Southgate's attention will turn to ending a dismal run of form that killed anticipation for the tournament during the Nations League.

Iran's camp has also been divided over political issues with the oppression of Iranian women cause for protest and division among some members of the squad. Many were even calling for Iran to be booted out of the tournament, but here they stand.

The heat and intensity of this game should suit the away side and in Mehdi Taremi they have a striker who is proven on the European stage and capable of causing problems for the favourites.

Score Prediction: England 1-0 Iran

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Harry Smith's Tip: Under 2.5 goals