England know they will be through to the knockout rounds if they beat USA tonight, while Wales find themselves in the peculiar position of cheering them on.
Everything has gone swimmingly so far for Gareth Southgate and his players, with the 6-2 victory over Iran one of the most complete performances in the tournament and one cast in a better light by Iran’s performance against Wales today.
Things can turn quickly though, and USA are one of the few nations with the personnel and attributes to play at Premier League intensity. They pride themselves on an aggressive approach out of possession, with Tyler Adams and Winston McKennie providing youthful energy in midfield. Whether they possess requisite quality once they’re on the ball is another matter, and a lack of pace between centre-back pairing Tim Ream and Walker Zimmerman is another potential weakness. A Rob Green error helped USA earn a draw the last time these two nations played in a competitive match at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.
England have been boosted by the news that Harry Kane is available after turning his ankle against Iran, and the captain is looking to get off the mark in his quest for another World Cup golden boot. There is no obvious reason for Southgate to make changes after such a polished and fluent performance, even if a system change is mooted when England play more potent opposition. One of the incentives for England and Southgate tonight is to earn the chance to rotate for the final group match against Wales, and ensure those on the fringes of the squad get a taste of World Cup action. Marcus Rashford, Jack Grealish and Callum Wilson all made positive contributions from the bench against Iran.
Full team news on the way around 6pm.