All the best reaction as England draw Belgium, Panama and Tunisia

ENGLAND were handed a favourable draw for the 2018 World Cup in Russian Federation yesterday after being chosen to face Belgium, Panama and Tunisia in Group G.

England are second seeds behind Belgium in Group G but will fancy their chances against Tunisia and tournament debutants Panama.

And that makes them the clear favourites in the eyes of Maaloul.

As quoted in the Mirror, Martinez said: "I knew we were going to get England".

Southgate, who will be leading England for the first time at a major competition after they qualified with an unbeaten record in the qualification process, refused to place any expectations on his squad and preferred to focus on making continued improvements in the months leading up to the finals.

"We have talented players - players who are at the summit of their form and young players too".

"Tunisia and Panama, we have to do more research on", he said. I asked God to avoid putting is in the first group because Ramadan finishes on June 14-15. We know that in the matches we have played so far - even against the very best teams - we have been very competitive.

Gareth Southgate's side also have Panama, who came through the Concacaf round, on June 24 in Nizhy Novgorod.

But the matches against Tunisia and England will be particularly evocative for their coach Hernan Dario Gomez.

"Through the qualifying campaign you don't think about days like today where everything hits home, but that's the beauty of the World Cup".

"They're ranked where they are in the world because of the quality they've got".

"Panama are very happy with this group".

"We haven't done as much preparing on the African teams yet so now that's what we can focus in on".

Gareth Southgate's side have drawn Hazard's Belgium which will see Gary Cahill marking his Chelsea team-mate.

"I think we haven't had a clear captaincy figure for a little while and I think we could have jumped into a decision and not given other people the chance to step forward and do the things they've done".

  • Tracy Klein