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England star Harry Kane

FIFA World Cup preview: England

For a country that boasts the biggest league in the world, England has had its fair share of global football disgrace.

The Poms thought things couldn't get much worse when their 2014 FIFA World Cup campaign lasted just eight days. That's right, England couldn't even progress out of their group.

You would think that would steel England, but no. Two years later the mighty nation was toppled by little Iceland in the round of 16 at the European Championship.

England has not tasted World Cup victory since 1966, a long time between drinks.

As usual, they boast a strong roster capable of big things in Russia. Tunisia and Panama should be cannon fodder for England and they should progress along with Belgium.

The only thing stopping them will be their own mentality and history of failure.

The draw for England

Tunisia, June 19

Panama, June 24

Belgium, June 29

The star player

Harry Kane may not have the most caps in this England roster, but he is the most important player they have.

Wayne Rooney's retirement in 2017 means Kane will step up as the key striker and he has form on the board.

Kane was the world's leading goalscorer in 2017 and the Tottenham star will have to carry that form into this tournament.

We can talk about defence and structures and service all we like, but Kane needs to be burying those goals into the back of the net for England to progress deep into the World Cup.

What needs to go right?

Two things - Kane needs to remain fit and England need to bypass their mental demons.

Panama is capable of producing an upset in this group and Belgium is a tough opponent. This roster carries the hopes and expectations of 53 million people desperate for football redemption.

If England can put past failures behind them and put their best football on the pitch, they can turn a corner and become a powerhouse once more.

About the Author Josh Alston

Josh Alston is a hack with over 12 years industry experience, covering sport across all codes for newspapers and online agencies. Known to frequent grade matches because of their cheap tinnies. Eventually graduated with a Bachelor of Journalism and a Masters in sitting on the hill when the local cricket side was playing. Softball premiership winner, rugby league legend in Year 10 and no stranger to Doomben Racecourse.

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