World Cup 2022 LIVE: England vs Senegal team news, starting 11 and latest – Bukayo Saka starts, Raheem Sterling out tonight

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World Cup: England prepare to face Senegal on eve of last-16 tie

England face Senegal in a World Cup last-16 clash tonight in Qatar. After finishing top of Group B to qualify for the knockout stages, England’s bid to win the World Cup starts to get serious with a place in the quarter-finals on the line. England had to endure penalties as they beat Colombia at this stage in Russia four years ago, and Gareth Southgate will be hoping there is less tension tonight against Senegal.

In what has been a wildly unpredictable World Cup so far, England’s path to the last 16 was rather more serene than some of the other tournament contenders. Despite the boos that followed the goalless draw with the USA, England thrashed both Iran and Wales and finished the group stage as the tournament’s top scorers. Marcus Rashford’s double against Wales had given Southgate a selection headache, but Bukayo Saka and Phil Foden were instead preferred with Raheem Sterling unavailable for selection and dealing with a family matter.

This is England’s first meeting with Senegal, who remain a threat despite the absence of injured star Sadio Mane. Senegal are the champions of Africa and reached the last 16 by defeating Ecuador in a crunch clash in Group A. Aliou Cisse’s side are experienced and know how to deliver on the big stage, while the Lions of Teranga will be motivated by the chance to become the first African team to reach the World Cup quarter-finals for the second time.

Follow all the build-up to England vs Senegal and latest World Cup news with our live blog below:

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What to expect from England vs Senegal

A first meeting for the two sides – with Senegal having edged out Ecuador and Gareth Southgate’s side having eased past Wales to round of their group stage.

Other than Ben White who has flown home due to personal reasons, Southgate has a fully fit squad to choose from. There’s no shortage of selection dilemmas though, with Jordan Henderson, Marcus Rashford and Phil Foden pushing to retain their places over Mason Mount, Raheem Sterling and Bukayo Saka.

England vs Senegal: What to expect from World Cup fixture

Michael Jones4 December 2022 17:58

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Senegal line-up

There is just change to the Senegal side who beat Ecuador last time out. Idrissa Gueye is out through suspension so Krepin Diatta comes in.

Senegal XI: E Mendy, Sabaly, Koulibaly, Diallo, Jakobs, Sarr, Ciss, N Mendy, Diatta, Ndiaye, Dia

Michael Jones4 December 2022 17:53

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Will Aliou Cisse make the game?

Senegal’s biggest issue may be the welfare of boss Aliou Cisse, who missed Saturday’s media duties through illness. Assistant coach Regis Bogaert replaced Cisse at the news conference and explained the situation saying:

“He has been sick for a couple of days now. He let us take charge of training yesterday, obviously with his instructions to the players.

“Hopefully tomorrow he will be able to come and be on the bench with the players but we are sure at 10pm he will be there with the team.

“I can confirm he is sick and has a bit of a temperature, that is why we have to be careful with his situation.”

Michael Jones4 December 2022 17:51

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Southgate makes one change

Gareth Southgate has made just the one change to the England starting XI from the team that defeated Wales last time out. Marcus Rashford – who scored twice during that match – is dropped to the bench with Bukayo Saka coming in to replace him.

Michael Jones4 December 2022 17:48

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Bukayo Saka starts for England against Senegal as Marcus Rashford drops out

The Arsenal winger, who scored twice in the 6-2 opening win over Iran, was left out for the final game of Group B, a 3-0 victory over Wales, last time out.

But with a place in the quarter-finals against France at stake, Southgate has opted to recall him.

Michael Jones4 December 2022 17:46

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England line-up

England XI: Pickford; Walker, Stones, Maguire, Shaw; Rice, Bellingham, Henderson; Saka, Kane, Foden

Michael Jones4 December 2022 17:45

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Who would Three Lions play next if they beat Senegal?

Gareth Southgate’s England squad will be hoping to make it back-to-back finals in major international competitions later this year – and this time go one step better and lift the trophy.

Four years ago the Three Lions reached the semi-finals of the 2018 World Cup as the upturn in international fortunes began under Southgate, before they went the distance to the final at Euro 2020. Now in Qatar the objective will remain the same, to end the long wait since 1966 for success on the biggest stage.

Three matches in the group phase and then three further knock-out fixtures must be navigated at the finals before the trophy is up for grabs on 18 December at the 80,000-seater Lusail Stadium.

England navigated the qualifiers with ease to reach Qatar, winning eight and drawing two to finish ahead of Poland, Albania, Hungary, Andorra and San Marino. But many of those matches were merely opportunities for Southgate and his coaches to put early plans in place and get an idea of how the team can continue to be built in the pursuit of success this winter.

Here is the route England must now take to reach the World Cup final for the first time in over 50 years, and the sides they’ll face along the way.

Michael Jones4 December 2022 17:43

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Southgate not worried about ‘favourites’ tag

England go into this game as the favourites to progress to the quarter-finals despite them taking on the African champions Senegal but the added expectation on the Three Lions isn’t something that is worrying manager Gareth Southgate.

“We will be considered favourites,” Southgate said. “But that doesn’t really mean anything in a one-off game,

“It doesn’t mean there isn’t any pressure for Senegal because every international team has great pressure in their own nation and externally as well.”

Michael Jones4 December 2022 17:38

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Sterling not available for England

News is filtering through that Raheem Sterling won’t be available to feature for England this evening as he is dealing with a personal family matter.

His absence is a big loss for the Three Lions but they have plenty of attacking talent in the squad to compensate.

(The FA via Getty Images)

Michael Jones4 December 2022 17:35

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Rashford to start on the bench for England?

England are taking on Senegal for the first time ever in competitive football with a quarter-final place against France on the line.

The team news is expected out shortly with rumours circulating that Gareth Southgate is going to leave Marcus Rashford on the bench.

Rashford is England’s leading goalscorer having scored three goals so far in the competition.

Michael Jones4 December 2022 17:31

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