Sport Soccer

Thursday 29 September 2016

Harry Kane keen to tackle Europe's elite with England

Published 13/10/2015 | 09:36

Harry Kane won his sixth England cap in the defeat of Lithuania
Harry Kane won his sixth England cap in the defeat of Lithuania

Harry Kane believes the upcoming high-profile friendlies will be crucial after England qualified so easily for next summer's European Championship.

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Roy Hodgson's men have rallied impressively after last year's World Cup debacle, going on a 14-match unbeaten run since returning from Brazil.

The Three Lions have enjoyed 12 wins in that period, the latest of which came on Monday as Lithuania were swatted aside 3-0 on a cold night in Vilnius.

That victory saw England reach a major championship with a 100 per cent record for the first time ever, but Switzerland were the only real opposition in a group that also included Slovenia, Estonia and San Marino.

It makes England's glamorous pre-tournament friendlies all the more important in Kane's opinion, starting with a trip to Spain and Wembley encounter against France next month.

"We'll be playing some of the top nations in the world," he said.

"They are the sort of teams we should be testing ourselves against. It's good preparation for us.

"I don't think (we will approach them with any trepidation). We've won 10 out of 10 and the confidence is sky high.

"We had a game plan here and we knew what we had to do.

"It's a great achievement. We are very proud. It's a great achievement for the players, staff and everyone.

"We can't afford to get carried away as we have some top friendlies coming up against some top sides. We're looking forward to testing ourselves against those."

England are certainly going to have a tougher time in those matches compared to the clash in Lithuania, where Kane did everything but score.

He certainly had chances, only to be denied by the saves of Giedrius Arlauskis. When he did manage to beat the impressive goalkeeper, Kane saw his shot come back off the post and bounce into the net off the back of Arlauskis.

"Oh no, that's a scandal," Kane said as a joke when told it was given as an own goal.

"I was unlucky not to score officially. I got a few shots off and was quite pleased with the way I played.

"I've just got to keep going at it, keep working hard and the goals will come."

Kane is still a way off last season's remarkable goalscoring form, but the performances have been solid enough for club and country.

Tottenham have not lost a Premier League match since the opening day, with Mauricio Pochettino's side happy to "stay under the radar" in the race for a top-four finish.

"It's very open," Kane said. "I think that's the standard of the Premier League - anyone can beat anyone and that's been shown a lot this season.

"We have Liverpool on Saturday and we are really looking forward to it.

"Hopefully we can perform well again and get another three points."

Denying Jurgen Klopp a debut win as Liverpool manager would be another impressive result for Spurs, who Kane believes are benefiting from a full season under Pochettino.

"I think we've out-run every team we have played this season," he said.

"That's a sign we're playing the manager's tactics right and we are fit enough to do it, so it's a case of doing it again on Saturday.

"Obviously Liverpool are going to have a new manager and they will be up for it, but we know what we have to do."

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