Sterling's time may still come but it appears as if Rashford is set to be given the nod by Southgate and he surely won't let anyone down, particularly against a Panama side that are arguably the worst team at this World Cup.
Southgate went on to compare being at the World Cup and travelling with a press pack like "being on holiday with your family".
England's team and media have traditionally had a fractious relationship, but things have improved under Southgate.
"It's always helpful to know the opposition team", Southgate said with a smile when the contrast was brought up.
Some contend that the media should not report on tactics, even if unwittingly revealed in an open training session as reporting them may disadvantage the team.
In contrast to his 23-goal season at club level for Premier League champions Manchester City, Sterling now hasn't scored in his last 21 internationals.
England (3-1-4-2): Pickford, Walker, Stones, Maguire, Henderson, Trippier, Lingard, Loftus-Cheek, Young, Rashford, Kane. "(Kane) gets himself in great positions.
"It has been a lot of years where it has been a little bit hard, but even playing darts now (in the media centre), we're getting to interact with each other and it's good fun".
Southgate gave a shout out to English fans, who have travelled in smaller numbers than past tournaments due to the expense of travelling to Russian Federation and fears of trouble on the streets.
[World Cup Roundup] Uruguay Qualifies for Last-16, Spain, Portugal Win
In Game two, Nigeria plays Iceland in Group D in a very important match for the African team, as they were beaten 2-0 by Croatia . Need more? Since the first World Cup in 1930, the tournament has had more than 1,150 matches played by thousands of players.
And Holland believes a more clinical touch in front of goal will come with experience.
Southgate initially suggested that the leak had put England at a "disadvantage" heading into the match, sparking debate over whether or not the English media should have publicised the images. "It might just take the time that it takes".
"They need to worry about us more than we need to worry about them. It already is now".
Belgium found it tough indeed to break through Panama until Dries Mertens produced a bit of magic, so including Rashford from the start makes flawless sense for England.
Highly fancied Belgium soared to the top of the group by easing past the World Cup debutants 3-0 in their opener and backed that performance up with a 5-2 victory over Tunisia yesterday.
England, meanwhile, has a wealth of world champions, Olympic gold medallists and, over half a century ago, even a World Cup-winning football team in its history.
"The line-up will be exactly the same. We have a certain stability and an organized team".
There was to be a twist though as in unfamiliar fashion England kept going until the very end and got their reward with a late victor.