Panama manager Hernan Dario Gomez admitted that his team were beaten by the far better side after the World Cup debutants were thrashed 6-1 by England on Sunday.

Five first half goals condemned Panama to the joint-heaviest defeat of the World Cup so far as they sank without trace in Nizhny Novgorod, although Felipe Baloy did make history by scoring their first ever World Cup goal.

But this was mostly a day to forget, and Gomez was brutally honest about his team's display, even admitting that Panama were 'frightened' of England's attacking power.

"The difference of goals could have been more," Gomez said, as quoted by Sky Sports News. "To concede five goals in the first half...well, what we did was try to avoid a bigger catastrophe.

"We managed to keep the ball in the second half a little bit more and we kept playing in an orderly fashion because had we not done that it wouldn't have been six goals but far more.


"We were feeling rather frightened at half-time because of the huge difference between us and England, and also Belgium."

It was an amateurish display by the Panamanians, who could have been beaten by a double figure margin had England not eased off in the second half.


But Gomez preferred to focus on England. He was seen in conversation with Gareth Southgate at the start of the second period, and was later asked what he had told the England boss.

"I congratulated him," Gomez said. "I told him that I really like his team. I think England are totally spectacular - a beautiful team."

The defeat eliminated Panama from the tournament, but they will hope to end on a high note when they face Tunisia in Saransk on Thursday.