Football

Euro 2020: Under-fire Harry Kane gets ex-players’ backing

One chance is all he needs, say former England strikers Shearer and Crouch

There's no doubt that England captain Harry Kane should start the next game against the Czech Republic, said former England striker Alan Shearer.

Kane has come under criticism for his performances at Euro 2020, with some suggesting that the Tottenham Hotspur striker has been weighed down by his unsettled future.

GROUP D
CZECH REPUBLIC ENGLAND

Shearer had also found himself under intense scrutiny, having endured a 21-month goal drought going into the 1996 European Championship which England hosted.

 

But the former Blackburn Rovers and Newcastle United striker ended his dry spell in style, racking up five goals to help the Three Lions reach the semi-finals, where they lost to Germany on penalties.

Shearer said on the BBC: "Forget about leaving your captain and your leader out. We know what he can do, we know what a good player he is. One chance and it's in the back of the net."

Former England striker Peter Crouch echoed Shearer's sentiments, saying: "One kick can change everything."

The former Liverpool and Stoke City striker recalled making a dreadful miss with a scissor kick during England's game against Trinidad & Tobago during the 2006 World Cup. But he subsequently scored the first goal to help England win 2-0.

Crouch wrote in his Daily Mail column: "Yes, things turned out well for me that night in Nuremberg. But I was aware going into the game that all eyes were on me and the critics who felt I shouldn't be in the team were waiting for their chance."

He reiterated his support for Kane, adding: "In the mad world of tournaments, you are only ever one kick away from everything changing."

British media reported yesterday that Manchester City have put in a £100 million (S$185.5m) bid for Kane, but Spurs are unlikely to accept it.

While both Shearer and Crouch believe that Kane should retain his place, they feel that manager Gareth Southgate should make tweaks elsewhere.

Shearer suggested fielding Borussia Dortmund midfielder Jude Bellingham to "add something different" as well as Aston Villa's Jack Grealish.

Crouch also believes Grealish should feature more, adding that Jadon Sancho, who has yet to come off the bench, should be involved.

Southgate will likely be without Mason Mount and Ben Chilwell. The Chelsea duo have to self-isolate after being filmed coming into close contact with Scotland's Billy Gilmour, who tested positive for Covid-19.

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