Live Commentary: England 2-2 Iraq - as it happened

Live Commentary: England 2-2 Iraq - as it happened
© PA Photos
Live text coverage of the Under-20 World Cup match between England and Iraq that proves to be a thrilling draw.

England let a 2-0 lead slip to draw 2-2 with Iraq in their opening game at the Under-20 World Cup.

Captain Conor Coady gave the Three Lions the lead towards the end of the first half, with Luke Williams adding the second after the break.

Ali Faez got Iraq back into the game from the penalty spot, before Ali Adnan broke through England's defence in stoppage time to level the scores.

Read how all the action unfolded below:


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6.03pmGood evening. It's less than an hour until England get their Under-20 World Cup campaign underway in Turkey as they take on Iraq in group E.

6.05pmThere are plenty of young Premier League stars in the Three Lions' squad for this tournament, including Tottenham striker Harry Kane, Newcastle United's Gael Bigirimana and James Ward-Prowse from Southampton.

6.08pmThis is the first of three group games for England, who will also face Chile and Egypt as they look to progress to the knockout stage of the tournament. Last time around they made it to the last eight, but were beaten by Nigeria.

6.11pmEngland's starting lineup for the match has been announced, so let's take a closer look...

6.13pmENGLAND STARTING XI: Johnstone, Flanagan, Potts, Dier, Lascelles, Coady, Ward-Prowse, Lundstram, Williams, Barkley, Kane

6.15pmSo Everton's Ross Barkley will partner Kane up front, while Liverpool midfielder Conor Coady takes the captain's armband. Eric Dier, who is the only member of the 21-man squad not to play for an English side, also makes the starting lineup, while Bigirimana misses out.

6.18pmIRAQ STARTING XI: Hameed, Adnan, Natiq, Faez, Salman, Kadhim, Abdulraheem, Tareq, Arebat, Nadhim, Ismael

6.22pmIraq's squad is entirely made up of players from clubs in the country, with three coming from current Iraqi Premier League leaders Al Shorta. The youngest member of their squad is defender Burham Jumaah, who turns 17 next week.

6.25pmSpurs striker Harry Kane has been learning from his club teammate Gareth Bale in the run up to this tournament. The 19-year-old told Sky Sports News: "Gareth's a world class player and you can only learn from players like that in the way they train and the way they play. Whenever you watch his game, his movement and his confidence is extremely high. I'll try to learn from that."

6.28pmIraq's players may not be as well known as some of the names of England's team sheet this evening, but there's plenty of international experience within the side. Several members of their squad were also involved in the senior side's 2014 World Cup qualifier against Australia last week, which they lost 1-0.

6.32pmIraq's coach is former player Hakeem Shaker Al-Azzawi. The coach made history last year when he became the first man to take charge of three different Iraqi sides simultaneously, as he led the senior side, Olympic team and youth team at the same time. He's since stepped down from the senior post to focus on the Under-20s.

6.36pmEngland's coach for the tournament is former senior side caretaker manager Peter Taylor, who took up the role earlier this year, having been fired from his post with the Bahrain national team last October.

6.40pmThe other two team's in group E, Egypt and Chile, were in action earlier today, with the South Americans just edging the match 2-1. England's game against Chile on Wednesday evening could decide who will top the group.

6.44pmTonight's game is at the Akdeniz Univeristy Stadium in Antalya, which is the home of Turkish Super Lig side Antalyaspor. The ground has a capacity of 7,100. There should be a good number of Iraqi fans in the crowd, given that the country shares a border with Turkey, but England fans always travel in good numbers too, so hopefully there won't be too many empty seats, as has been the case at some of the other fixtures so far in this tournament.

6.47pmThe Iraq players will probably cope better with the hot and humid conditions today. The latest forecast for Antalya is showing temperatures of 34C and next to no wind.

6.50pmThe referee for this game is Mexican Roberto Garcia, who was one of the officials at the Olympics last summer. He'll be joined by two Mexican assistants and a Columbian fourth official.

6.53pmWith less than 10 minutes until kickoff the stadium is starting to fill up nicely. I'd estimate that it's around 50% full at the moment, but there are still fans finding their seats.

6.56pmThe players are on the pitch ready to get the game underway. There's just time for the anthems before kickoff. It's fair to say that some of the England team could work on their vocals! The Iraq side enthusiastically belt out their anthem, which is well received by the largely Iraqi-supporting crowd.

6.58pmJust time for a quick prediction before the game gets underway. On paper it should be a comfortable win for England, but they don't have the best record at this tournament. I think it will be a hard-fought victory for Peter Taylor's men this evening.

0 minEngland get the game underway.

3 minIraq quickly win the ball off England, passing it around their back four, but James Ward-Prowse wins it back, linking up with Jonathan Flanagan. Harry Kane is pushing for an early chance at the Iraqi goal, but Eric Dier catches Mahommed Jabbar Arebat in the build up, conceding a free kick. The defender receives some medical attention following the challenge, but he seems alright to go on.

5 minWard-Prowse is proving a handfull in midfield early on in this clash. This time he flicks the ball forward to Coady, who picks out Luke Williams inside the penalty area, but the Middlesbrough striker is penalised for handling the ball. It's been a good, aggressive start from England.

8 minCHANCE! Ross Barkley breaks into the box and manages to create some space to unleash a powerful strike from the edge of the area, forcing a good save from Mohammed Hameed in the Iraq goal. England win a corner, and Hameed initially loses the ball, but manages to pounce on it before any of the English players can connect with it.

11 minEngland win another corner, but this time Hameed comfortably takes the catch straight from the Ward-Prowse delivery. Iraq go on the counter-attack for the first time in the match, but a pass forward has far too much pace, and goes straight to Samuel Johnstone in the England goal. That's the first time the ball has been in England's half so far in this match, it really has been a very positive start by the Three Lions.

14 minCHANCE! After a patient build up, John Lundstram flicks the ball in to Ward-Prowse, but Ali Adnan stops the ball on the line, before Hameed manages to claim the ball. It was great defending by the Baghdad FC man, but England will feel that they should have taken the lead their.

17 minIraq are starting to see a little more of the ball now, but are relying too much on the long ball. Hameed blasts the ball forward looking for Jawad Kadhim, but Dier reaches it first and cooly taps it back to Johnstone, who launches England back down the other end of pitch.

18 minIncidentally, Peter Taylor is very animated on the sideline at the minute. He clearly feels his side should have made the most of their early dominance and found the back of the net.

20 minEngland win a throw in, which is taken by Potts. Flanagan sprints down the wing to find Williams, who crosses it to Barkley, but Ali Faez is alert to the danger and makes the block. Iraq seem to be growing in confidence at the back.

23 minIraq are applying some pressure in the England half, seemingly boosted by their strong defensive performance so far. Potts clears the ball from the edge of the penalty area, but Saif Salman is there to put the ball back in, but he's got no-one ahead of him, allowing Johnstone to boot the ball well down the pitch.

26 minIraq go for another long ball forward, and Salman almost picks it up inside the final third, but Ward-Prowse manages to beat him to the ball. Jawad wins it back for Iraq, but Ali Adnan lose the bal, and England force them back into their own half. England's passing has become a little scrappy in the last five minutes or so.

29 minEngland win a throw in a strong position, but Potts' delivery is easily cleared by Mustafa Nadhim. England regain possession, but Barkley's attempt to set up a goal-scoring opportunity hands the ball to Hameed. England just seem to be trying to rush too much at the moment.

31 minCoady and Flanagan work together in midfield, getting the better of their opponents, but Flanagan's curling high ball into the box fails to find its target of Lundstram, giving Iraq a goal kick.

34 minCHANCE! It's another superb ball into the box from Flanagan, as he curls it in from the wing towards Williams. The striker rises high to take a header, but his effort goes just high of the crossbar. England are just starting to regain their dominance in midfield after a rather scrappy 10 minutes.

37 minCHANCE! Iraq respond well to England's change in pace, as Mohanad Abdulraheem hits the ball on the half-volley from the edge of the box, just missing the target. The Duhok FC striker was given far too much by the England back four.

39 minEngland seem to be content just to keep the ball, but Jamaal Lascelles spots Lundstram in space in the final third. However, the Everton midfielder drifts offside while waiting for the defender's long ball forward.

41 minGOAL! England 1-0 Iraq (Coady)

42 minHarry Kane breaks into the box looking to get a shot away, but the ball is put behind for a corner. Ward-Prowse curls the ball in, and the captain Conor Coady rushes in towards the goal to beat Hameed with a powerful header. That was a superbly executed set piece from England, giving them the lead just before half time.

45 minBarkley breaks into the box looking to double England's lead, but Iraq manage to delay the threat by getting the ball out for a corner. There will be two minutes of added time.

45+1 minWard-Prowse whips the ball in from the corner, but Dhurgham Ismael manages the clear with an acrobatic overhead kick.

45+2 minHALF TIME: England 1-0 Iraq

7.49pmEngland head into the break with a one-goal advantage thanks to captain Conor Coady. England were far from flawless in the opening 45 minutes, but on balance they were the better of the two sides, and deserve to be ahead at half time.

7.52pmHowever, they'll need to add to the Liverpool midfielder's headed effort if they're to secure the win. Iraq looked threatening at times, with Mohanad Abdulraheem in particular causing problems for the England defence.

7.55pmLet's have a quick look at some of the stats from the first half. England had more possession than their opponents, seeing 59% of the ball. Iraq had four attempts at the England goal, but only one really caused Samuel Johnstone to react, while seven of England's eight attempts tested Mohammed Hameed.

7.58pmIt was a pretty clean half from both teams. Neither side received any bookings, while Iraq committed one foul. England conceded five free kicks, two of which were for hand balls.

8.02pmThe players are back out ready for the second half.

46 minIraq get the second half underway.

48 minIt's a positive start by Iraq. Jawad Kadhim breaks into the box, but is forced wide by Dier, but the Sporting CP defender puts the ball behind, giving Iraq their first corner of the match. England get several chances to clear the ball, but Saif Salman and Ali Faez both bring the ball back into the box, before Ali Adnan fires the ball well wide.

49 minWard-Prowse and Kane work together in midfield to get the ball up the other end of the pitch, but England lose the ball when Barkley is caught offside.

50 minBOOKINGS! Lundstram picked up the first yellow of the game following the offside incident. It wasn't clear what he did to pick up the booking through. Potts is booked moments later after bringing Kadhim down just outside the box.

51 minSAVES! From the free kick, there's a scramble inside the box, and Iraq get two shots at the England goal, but Johnstone is sharp, and makes two quick-fire saves from close range.

52 minGOAL! England 2-0 Iraq (Williams)

54 minAgainst the run of play, England double their lead thanks to a superb run from Harry Kane, setting up Luke Williams for a simple tap in. Iraq were stretched, having sent number up the other end for their free kick moments earlier.

56 minSUB! Iraq make the first change of the match, taking Suad Natiq off for Mahdi Kamil. It's a risky strategy, replacing a defender with a midfielder, but Iraq know they will need to be attacking if they're to get back in this game now.

59 minIraq win another corner, but Coady drops back to help in defence and makes a good clearance. The second goal seems to have calmed England down, they seem to be taking their time while on the ball a little more now.

62 minAnother strong build up in midfield sees Barkley bearing down on the Iraq goal but he can't find space, so pulls the ball back to Williams, who mis-hits the ball and it bobbles harmlessly into Hameed's arms.

64 minSAVE! Iraq manage to go on the counter attack, with Mohanad smashing the ball at the target from the centre of the box, but Johnstone manages to make the stop yet again. The Manchester United keeper has had to make a couple of crucial saves for England in this half.

67 minNeither side really seem to be controlling the game at the moment. Saif Salman goes for a long ball forward from just inside the Iraqi half, but it's picked up by Williams, who also goes for a long pass, which goes out of play.

68 minSUB! It's another aggressive change for Iraq, as they take the defensively minded Dhurgham Ismael off for striker Ammar Abdulhussein.

70 minSUBS! It's a double change for England as Adam Reach and Christopher Long come off the bench in place of John Lundstram and the scorer of the second goal Luke Williams.

73 minPENALTY! Iraq have been awarded a penalty after Sam Johnstone brings down Mohanad Abdulraheem. However, the Man United keeper stays on the pitch, just picking up a yellow card.

74 minGOAL! England 2-1 Iraq (Faez)

75 minIt's a cool spot kick from defender Ali Faez, as he easily beats Johnstone with a penalty to the left side of the net. Iraq are right back in this game.

77 minCHANCE! England almost restore their lead straight away as Chris Long breaks into the box with Iraq still getting back into position after their penalty, but Hameed is on hand to make the save. This game had fallen a bit flat after England's second goal, but it's definitely perked up a bit now!

80 minThe goal has definitely given Iraq a boost, they're showing much more pace on the ball now, with Humam Tareq stretching the English midfield, while Mustafa Nadhim delivers a dangerous looking cross, but his teammates can't control it inside the box. This could be a tense final 10 minutes for England.

82 minCHANCE! It's a superb solo effort from Kane, who picks the ball up inside England's own half, runs into the Iraqi penalty area and goes for goal, but blasts the ball straight into the hands of Hameed. The Spurs striker has been impressive, but looks keen to round off his performance with a goal.

84 minWell this is a potential issue for England. Kane looks to set himself up for another shot at the Iraqi goal, but Hameed comes off his line to make the clearance. He gets the ball away, but wipes the striker off his feet in the process, and the Tottenham man appears to have picked up an injury.

85 minSUB! While Kane receives treatment, Iraq take advantage of the break in play to make their final substitution, bringing Farhan Shakor replaces Jawad Kadim.

87 minCHANCE! Iraq almost snatch an equaliser as Mohanad gets plenty of space inside the penalty area, and manages to get the ball through to Ammar Abdulhussein, who heads the ball just over the crossbar

88 minIt looks like Kane has shaken off whatever knock he picked up in his collision with Hameed. The striker spent a couple of minutes being attended to by the England physio, but is now back on the pitch.

89 minCHANCE! Farhan Shakor announces his arrival by delivering a dangerous cross into the box, but Mahanad can't connect with his delivery. Iraq certainly haven't given up on this yet.

90+1 minSUB! England make their final change, bringing on Gael Bigirimana for Ross Barkley. Meanwhile, the fourth official has confirmed that there will be four minutes of stoppage time.

90+3 minGOAL! England 2-2 Iraq (Adnan)

90+4 minWow! Iraq have been looking threatening since their penalty and it's paid off. Ali Adnan picks the ball up out wide, and beats three England defender before blasting the ball past Johnstone.

90+5 minBOOKING! Coady is not happy that one of his teammates was down injured in the build up to the goal and lets the referee know his feelings, resulting in a yellow card for the England captain just before full time.

90+5 minFULL TIME: England 2-2 Iraq

8.55pmIt's a case of two points lost for England, as they throw away a two-goal lead through some defensive errors late on to draw 2-2 with Iraq in their opening game of the Under-20 World Cup.

8.56pmIt looked like England had everything under control when they doubled their lead against the run of play early in the second half, but Iraq were handed a lifeline with just over 15 minutes to play when Samuel Johnstone conceded a penalty, which proved to be the turning point for both sides.

8.58pmGiven how Iraq played in the final 15 minutes, it's hard to say that didn't deserve the point, but England should have been able to close out the match from 2-0 up. That's something they'll have to work on if they're to progress from the group stage of the tournament.

8.59pmThe result leaves England and Iraq joint second in Group E, following Chile's win over Egypt earlier today. England face Chile and Wednesday, while Iraq take on Egypt.

9.02pmWell that's all from an eventful evening at the Akdeniz University Stadium in Antalya. Stick around for reports and reaction to today's Under-20 World Cup games, and join us again tomorrow as the teams from groups A and B are back in action. Until then, thanks for joining me this evening.

Conor Coady
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