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Five points to take away from England's 6-1 defeat of Panama

England have never scored this many goals in a World Cup match. Credit: PA

England's World Cup campaign burst into life on Sunday after they thrashed Panama 6-1, including a hat-trick from captain Harry Kane.

It was England's biggest ever win in a major tournament and saw Gareth Southgate's men qualify for the last 16.

  • Where does this day rank in England’s tournament history?

It ranks right up there. If you look at the statistics England have never scored that many goals in a World Cup match.

The last time England scored four goals was in the World Cup final in 1966, and the last time they won by more than four?

Well they’ve never done that in tournament history, Euros or World Cup.

Sunday's score is statistically fantastic, but I think you have to bear in mind the opponent was Panama, but it’s difficult to be negative after a performance like that.

The team must not get carried away, they still have a long way to go. Credit: PA
  • Is there a danger of us getting carried away? As you say, it was only Panama

Yes, it was only Panama and they were quite poor, but some of the criticism after the first game was that England - while they played well for 30 minutes - were on the whole pretty average and their finishing was fairly non-existent.

In this case, they’ve shown that they can be clinical when they’re on-song and they were certainly on-song today.

They had 11 shots, seven of which were on target, six of which were goals.

So if you look at those percentages that’s quite impressive and that was definitely lacking in the first game.

England had 11 shots, seven of which were on target, six of which were goals.
  • How should England approach the final group match now they’ve qualified?

Gareth Southgate is obviously going to make quite a few changes to the team ahead of the match against Belgium, because there are some players in Russia who haven’t played for a few weeks - they need game time.

Other players need to be kept in the frame for starting when the knockout stages begin, for example Marcus Rashford, who I expect to start.

But England have to go out to win the game, whatever their route, because they’ve got to keep this momentum going and they’ve got to keep this team spirit going.

You can’t go into a game not wanting to win it, otherwise the wheels could fall off.

John Stones scores with a header. Credit: PA
  • What have you noticed about this England team in comparison to others you have covered?

The team seem incredibly well prepared, and I mean technically prepared.

You’ve seen it quite a few times in the first two matches - when a set piece is carried out, all the players appear to know what their individual jobs are and they manage to carry them out pretty well.

What I’ve also noticed is that they seem to be enjoying themselves, it seems to be a joy to be here rather than a task which they’ve had to endure, which it has appeared to be in the past.

In fact, the last three or four tournaments that I’ve covered, it’s seemed like it’s been a chore for England players to be on international duty.

With this lot, for whatever reason, Southgate has to take a lot of credit for that, they seem to be enjoying themselves, enjoying each other’s company and enjoying the experience.

  • Can England win this World Cup?

The truth is, I do think it’s more of a possibility than I did before I came out here but it is far too early to even be contemplating it.