Diego Maradona drew the balls from Pot 2 and put Gareth Southgate’s side in Group G, with a relatively modest amount of travelling and a relatively easy task of progressing to the last 16.
Belgium remain tough opponents and England will do well to beat Roberto Martinez’s side when they are ranked fifth in the world, but Tunisia and Panama should not represent an insurmountable task even if some of Southgate’s players did contrive to lose to Iceland.
he structure of the draw was different to previous years, with all four pots decided by the teams’ FIFA rankings, rather than by confederation as in past years.
This left England in Pot Two and at danger of facing tournament favourites such as Germany or Brazil, but also meant they avoided the likes of Spain and Uruguay, who were also in their sector.
England manager Southgate will hope this tournament bucks the trend of recent poor performances.
His side, under the management of Roy Hodgson, were eliminated from Brazil 2014 in the group stage with one point from three games, while in Euro 2016 they were embarrassed by Iceland in the last 16.
England have only won the World Cup once, on home soil in 1966. Their best showing abroad was in Italy in 1990, when they were beaten on penalties in the semi-finals.
Three Lions confront Roberto Martinez’s quite fancied Belgians in Kaliningrad in their last opening clash, and will start their competition against the Tunisians – similarly as they did at France 98.
Belgium have beaten England just once in 21 gatherings – in 1936 – however the side that gloats Kevin De Bruyne, Eden Hazard and Romelu Lukaku is a fearsome monster.
The match likewise puts Tottenham partners Eric Dier and Jan Vertonghen against each other – which they set apart with a Snapchat together subtitled ‘Group Friends’.
The center match comes against debutants Panama – who give another connect to 1998, as they are overseen by Hernan Darío Gomez, who trained Colombia against England in France.
At one phase there was a 50-50 shot of either Brazil or Germany however have Gary Lineker kidded that Maradona was great with his hands thus it demonstrated yet again, the Argentina legend just illustration England with two balls to go.
When they were then set in G4, that left them confronting a 1,081 mile trip from their preparation base in Rapino, close Saint Petersburg, to Volgograd for their opening clash.