England vs Bulgaria
European Qualifiers Group A
5:00pm Saturday 7th September
Harry Kane scored a hat-trick since England maintained their perfect start using a victory over Bulgaria to Euro 2020 eligibility in Wembley.
The England captain broke the deadlock midway through the first half, slotting home from six metres following Bulgaria’s insistence to play from the trunk was penalized by Raheem Sterling.
In the next phase, England reach stride after a subdued first-half screen. Kane doubled his tally from the penalty spot within four minutes of the restart, then following Marcus Rashford was brought down at the box, then returned the favour to Sterling, squaring the ball to the Manchester City ahead to add England’s next on 55 seconds.
Kane dusted himself down and finished his first hat-trick with another emphatic penalty that restored the side of Gareth Southgate to the top of Group A.
Bulgaria looked to closed up shop and setup in a 5-4-1, and them finally broke down, though they didn’t have the half chance of the match as Jordan Pickford denied Marcelinho effort.
Trying to play out from a goal kick, Plamen Iliev pass fell to Sterling, who got to the byline and flipped back the ball to slot home from six yards for Kane.
Bulgaria continued to escape despite the aim, and though England turned it on after the rest, it arrived after a nice chance to get a leveller. After playing with a, Pickford saved Wanderson’s half volley from a angle, and England’d daylight.
Up the other end, Nikolay Bodurov abandoned a leg on Rashford, who showed agility to turn in the box, allowing Kane to score.
Provider turned for Sterling, squaring to tuck home .
Fresh blood was introduced by Southgate Together with the game being controlled by England. Mason Mount came on with 25 minutes remaining, although Alex made his first England appearance.
Kane then completed his hat-trick, finding the top corner with fine strike from 12 yards, and winning a punishment thanks to sub Kristian Dimitrov’s sloppy in the box.
Iliev from close variety denyed rashford a goal, and it ended 4-0 as England kept perfect. Southgate, choosing at a XI, acquired a performance in return.
Chelsea midfielder Mason Mount made his debut at Wembley, arriving on with 25 minutes to go, and admits he was excited it’s all a blur to him now…
“It’s a fantasy to create your England introduction, you wait for quite a while for this particular minute. You dream about this happening, it’s a slim possibility that it happens, but it’s definitely such a proud moment for my loved ones and me personally. It happened so fast, it’s just like a blur!
“I wasn’t overly nervous. I was excited to have on the pitch. I loved every minute of it. It has been a crazy couple of months, it’s happened so fast to this instant, but I’ve loved every moment. I am enjoying learning every day, learning so much from the seniors.”
England now face Kosovo in St Mary’s at Southampton on Tuesday evening at 7.45pm in Group A, while Bulgaria perform the Republic of Ireland at the same time in a friendly.