The Three Lions kicked off their Qatar 2022 campaign with a resounding Group B result on Monday. Bellingham headed home before Saka got the first of his double in Doha. Raheem Sterling, Marcus Rashford and Jack Grealish also fired at the Khalifa International Stadium.
Sterling already owned a piece of World Cup history as he was the seventh-youngest gem to feature at Brazil 2014. Luke Shaw also set the record as the youngest player to feature in South America. And the left-back’s cross found Bellingham to score past Iran this Monday.
Saka and Bellingham are now among England’s five youngest World Cup goalscorers
Shaw delivered an inch-perfect cross into the Iran box to find Bellingham as England broke the deadlock. Saka then became just the fourth Arsenal player to score for the Three Lions at a major tournament when he smashed Harry Maguire’s knockdown into the top corner.
Sterling would finish a third England attack and the match as a contest when he met Harry Kane’s cross in the first minute of first-half stoppage-time. Saka added his second of the tie just after the hour mark before Rashford took his place in the team and on the scoresheet.
Callum Wilson unselfishly squared to Grealish on 90 minutes to record England’s sixth goal of the tie. Mehdi Taremi had responded for Iran before Rashford’s goal and would add his second on 90+13’ from the penalty spot. Yet neither of his hits had an effect on the result.
England were comfortably the better of the two teams despite rarely needing to get out of third gear against Iran. Bellingham’s maiden Three Lions goal and Saka’s double delight put Gareth Southgate’s side en route to top Group B before Wales held the USA to a 1-1 draw.
Bellingham and Saka are also now two of England’s five youngest goalscorers at the World Cup over their 15 appearances. The 1966 champions first attempted to qualify in 1950 for the fourth of 22 editions so far. They last failed to feature at the tournament at USA 1994.
Owen is England’s youngest goalscorer at a World Cup ever by 320 days
Michael Owen is the youngest England goalscorer at a World Cup to date by 320 days. The striker fired his first attempt at the FIFA tournament at France 1998 as the Three Lions met Romania. He was only 18 years and 190 days old as he fired home in a 2-1 loss, per FIFA.
Glenn Hoddle introduced Owen off the bench for Teddy Sheringham on 72 minutes while a goal behind in Toulouse. It took the teenager just seven minutes to slot home Paul Scholes’ pass. Yet it would not prove to be enough for a point after Dan Petrescu hit on 90 minutes.
Romania marked Owen’s second opponent of France 1998 after featuring for five minutes against Tunisia in Group G. He then recorded his first start against Colombia but would not score or create as the Three Lions won 2-0. The result saw them finish second to Romania.
Owen is also England’s second youngest goalscorer at a World Cup to date
Owen continued to establish himself on the World Cup stage as England met Argentina in the Round of 16. After impressing during Group G, Hoddle let Owen stay in the starting XI in Saint-Etienne. He would also feature for all 120 minutes as the game went to penalties.
Argentina would end England’s time at France 1998 in the last 16 as La Albiceleste edged a 4-3 win in the shootout. Both teams had led during regular time after Gabriel Batistuta put the South Americans ahead. Alan Shearer and Owen then replied before Javier Zanetti hit.
Owen’s 16th-minute effort to go 2-1 in front also makes him the second youngest England player to score at a World Cup at 18 years and 198 days. Despite his tender age, the 89-cap forward – who would go on to boast 40 career goals – scored his penalty in their shoutout.
Bellingham is now the second youngest player to score a World Cup goal for England
Bellingham is now the second youngest player after Owen to score for England at a World Cup. The midfielder was just 19 years and 145 days old as he glanced Shaw’s cross into the Iran net on Monday. The Borussia Dortmund star timed his run into the box to perfection.
Shaw floated the ball to the edge of the six-yard area with a first-time pass begging for a teammate to attack it. Bellingham had judged his dart into the box perfectly to find a small pocket of space and knew he only needed to turn the ball goal-bound to find their opener.
Southgate started Bellingham in Doha for the central midfielder’s 18th cap and ninth start in all competitions so far. It also returned the Birmingham City product’s first goal. He had registered a first assist in his prior outing to draw 3-3 with Germany in the Nations League.
Saka is now among the Three Lions record-setters at the FIFA tournament
Saka is also now among the Three Lions’ record-setters at the FIFA event after he hit home twice against Iran. The Arsenal star was just 21 years and 88 days old to become the third-youngest England goalscorer at the World Cup. It was also his debut tie at the tournament.
Southgate gave Saka his England debut in October 2020 and has now started the forward in 14 of his 21 caps. The Hale End product has also now scored six goals alongside his five assists for his country. He offered one assist over his four appearances through Euro 2020.
Saka struck his first goal as England beat Iran with a superb strike into the top corner from Maguire’s knockdown. The forward then showed his quick feet and intelligence beyond his years to toy with Team Melli’s defenders and cut onto his left foot to drill home his double.
Alli had joined Owen in the Three Lions’ record books during Russia 2018
Dele Alli had joined Owen in the Three Lions’ record books during Russia 2018 with his goal against Sweden. The midfielder hit home at 22 years and 87 days old to put England 2-0 up in their quarter-final tie. He headed in Jesse Lingard’s cross on the verge of the hour mark.
Southgate fielded Alli five times as England finished fourth at the last World Cup four years ago. But he would only go on to use the MK Dons product to June 2019 when Alli made the most recent of his 37 caps. The midfielder hit three and assisted seven goals in his outings.
Alli suffered a drastic fall off in form at Tottenham Hotspur during the years that followed the 2018 World Cup. He flew to Russia after nine goals and 11 assists in 36 Premier League games. Yet he only scored 14 and created eight through his next 75 before joining Everton.
The 26-year-old has failed to kick his career back into gear at Goodison Park, either. After a free transfer that can cost Everton up to £40m after add-ons in January, he failed to score or lay on an assist over 13 games. He then joined Besiktas on a season-long loan in August.
Greaves falls out of the top five after 60 years among their youngest scorers
Jimmy Greaves has fallen out of England’s top five youngest goals at a World Cup after 60 years with Saka and Bellingham both scoring against Iran. He is still the Three Lions’ fifth-youngest goalscorer at the FIFA tournament, though, after his against Argentina in 1962.
The forward, who won the 1966 World Cup with England, scored against Argentina at 22 years and 102 days old. It was one of 44 efforts that Greaves hit home over 57 caps from May 1959 to May 1967. He scored on his Three Lions debut as a 19-year-old against Peru.
Greaves would only score one goal across seven appearances for England at World Cups in his career. He fired home after a Ron Flowers penalty and Sir Bobby Charlton’s attempt for the Three Lions’ third. It capped a 3-1 win over Argentina before losing in the quarter-final.