Sunday 22 April 2018

Harry Kane admits England must improve after lacklustre win over Lithuania

Harry Kane of England looks thoughtful after the FIFA 2018 World Cup Group F Qualifier between Lithuania and England at LFF Stadium on October 8, 2017 in Vilnius, Lithuania. (Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images)
Harry Kane of England looks thoughtful after the FIFA 2018 World Cup Group F Qualifier between Lithuania and England at LFF Stadium on October 8, 2017 in Vilnius, Lithuania. (Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images)

Harry Kane admitted England must improve after finishing their World Cup qualifying campaign with another underwhelming win.

Kane's first-half penalty earned Gareth Southgate's side a 1-0 win away to Lithuania.

It was a second straight 1-0 success following the late win over Slovenia on Thursday which sealed qualification for next summer's tournament, but once again England delivered a thoroughly uninspiring performance.

"It wasn't a fantastic performance, it was a solid one," Kane said on ITV.

"They didn't really create many chances. It's a win to finish off the group, it's been a good campaign for us and now we move on.

"It was a difficult surface, but we have to do better."

Tottenham midfielder Harry Winks was handed his debut by Southgate.

"I was quite surprised when I got the call, but I'm happy stepping in at any stage," he said.

Player Ratings

JACK BUTLAND: Produced a solid display two years on from making his only previous competitive England appearance in Lithuania. Some solid interventions and good distribution. 6

KIERAN TRIPPIER: Given the nod at right wing-back after shining for Tottenham, he was not at his marauding best in Vilnius. 5

AARON CRESSWELL: Handed his first start in an England shirt, the West Ham full-back provided an attacking outlet and defensive cover. Has big competition at left-back. 6

MICHAEL KEANE: The Everton defender went close to marking his fourth cap with his first goal, although Butland saved him from scoring an own goal in the second half. 6

HARRY MAGUIRE: Rewarded for his fine club form with his England debut, better contact would have led to a dream goal five minutes in. A towering presence in the air. 6

JOHN STONES: The ball-playing Manchester City centre-back made a few too many sloppy errors. Frustrating moments. 5

HARRY WINKS: Impressive England debut by the 21-year-old midfielder. Smart in possession, he flickered into life at times. 7

JORDAN HENDERSON: The hard-working Liverpool midfielder was guilty of keeping it too simple and straight in possession. 5

DELE ALLI: Back from the one-match ban that followed his foolish middle-finger gesture, Alli's movement earned a first-half penalty and his running broke up the play. 6

MARCUS RASHFORD: Part of an exciting three-pronged attack, flashes of excitement tapered off before he was taken off. 6

HARRY KANE: England's in-form captain struck home an unstoppable penalty to put the visitors ahead and proved a handful for Lithuania's back-line. 7

SUBS

DANIEL STURRIDGE (for Rashford, 72): Had a couple of half-chances but unable to make a telling impact. 6

JESSE LINGARD (for Alli, 81): Did okay off the bench against Slovenia, but did not have the same time to do so here. 6

Press Association

Sport Newsletter

The best sport action straight to your inbox every morning.

Editor's Choice

Also in Sport