Kieran Trippier shows he’s a key asset for England with creative masterclass versus Tunisia

England’s 2-1 win over Tunisia wasn’t exactly the perfect performance but it nonetheless displayed plenty of promise, not just for this World Cup but also the many tournaments to come, and Gareth Southgate must take huge credit for that, especially considering the Three Lions are one of the youngest and least-capped squads at the tournament.

And a key embodiment of that is Kieran Trippier. Before the World Cup started, he’d only ever made seven appearances for England, but during Monday night’s crucial victory the Tottenham star showed how important his deliveries from the right-hand side will be for this developing Three Lions outfit.

Whether from dead ball situations or from open play, there was something David-Beckham-esque about Trippier’s influence on the game, which is highlighted by the statistics.

With six chances to his name, only the Manchester United icon and former Three Lions skipper has created more for England in a single World Cup game since 1996 – according to OptaJoe.

Kieran Trippier's stats from England's win over Tunisia

The Tottenham defender also weighed in with an incredible seven successful crosses, completed two dribbles, made two tackles and had 84 touches of the ball, but his impact was felt most from a corner in stoppage time, which met Harry Maguire’s head and fell into the path of Harry Kane for the winner.

Advertisement

The importance of that quality at set pieces shouldn’t be downplayed, either. Three of the four sides with the most goals from set pieces reached the semi-finals at the last World Cup in 2014 – Brazil, Germany and the Netherlands – so it’s a fantastic asset for England to have, even if reaching the penultimate stage still feels at this point like something of a pipedream.