Preview: England vs. Iraq

Preview: England vs. Iraq
© PA Photos
Sports Mole previews England's opening match of the Under-20 World Cup against Iraq on Sunday.

England will be looking for a winning start to their Under-20 World Cup campaign when they face Iraq at the Akdeniz University Stadium on Sunday.

Peter Taylor's side will be hoping to improve on their last showing in this competition, when they lost 1-0 to Nigeria in the last 16 in 2011.

The Under-20s warmed up for the tournament by beating Uruguay 3-0 on Sunday evening.

Iraq have qualified for the competition for the first time since 2001, when they failed to progress beyond the group stages. They come into the tournament off the back of a 5-3 friendly victory over New Zealand last weekend.

Manchester United goalkeeper Sam Johnstone is expected to start between the sticks for England. Everton playmaker Ross Barkley and Newcastle United's Gael Bigirimana could also start in midfield.

Tottenham Hotspur striker Harry Kane may be partnered up front by Chris Long, who scored England's third goal against Uruguay.

Liverpool midfielder Conor Coady will captain the Three Lions.

Recent form:

England: DDDLW

Iraq: WLDDW

Possible lineups:

England: Johnstone; Garbutt, Lascelles, Thorpe, Flanagan; Bigirimana, Barkley, Coady, Reach; Long, Kane

Iraq: Hameed, Ismail, Adnan, Nadhim, Natiq; Salman, J Kadhim, Ismael, I Kadhim; Abdulhussein, Raheem

Sports Mole says: 2-0

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