June 18, 2018 / 5:23 PM / 3 months ago

England opt for attack-focused midfield against Tunisia

VOLGOGRAD, Russia (Reuters) - England will play an attack-minded midfield in their World Cup Group G opening match against Tunisia on Monday after manager Gareth Southgate included Jesse Lingard in the starting lineup.

World Cup - Group G - Tunisia vs England - Volgograd Arena, Volgograd, Russia - June 18, 2018 England's Jordan Pickford during the warm up before the match REUTERS/Toru Hanai

Southgate chose Jordan Henderson as the solitary England enforcer in the middle of the pitch and left Eric Dier on the bench, as widely expected.

Harry Maguire was given the nod as part of England’s central back three alongside John Stones and Kyle Walker, leaving experienced defender Gary Cahill on the bench.

Tunisia coach Nabil Maaloul selected striker Wahbi Khazri for his first match since April after an injury and wingback Ali Maaloul also plays despite picking up a muscle strain in a friendly against Spain earlier this month.

Mouez Hassen, who is French-born but recently elected to play for Tunisia, was picked in goal over veteran keeper Aymen Mathlouthi.

Reporting by William Schomberg and Mark Gleeson; Editing by Toby Davis

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