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‘We are struggling and we don’t have the ball’

Harry Kane has admitted that things are “not good” for the England team two games into Euro 2024, although the captain is determined to focus on reaching the knockouts, without playing well, “the sign of a good team”.

England’s most talented team in a generation was widely praised ahead of the tournament, but the talent in the squad has not translated onto the pitch so far. After facing Serbia and Denmark, Gareth Southgate’s team failed to kill any game and were sent back.

Where Serbia lacked the quality to punish England, Denmark did.

“I think we said before the tournament that there are no easy games and I think that shows,” said Kane BBC One immediately after the final 1-1 draw. “We have levels that we can reach and we can be better when we have the ball and without it. I think the sign of a good team is when you don’t play at your best and still find a way to get results like we have in the last two games.

“We are top of the group. We know we can improve. I know there will be a lot of noise and a bit of disappointment at home but we experienced this at the last Euros when we drew with Scotland. Step by step, we will get there.”

Gareth Southgate has yet to get the best out of his England team

Gareth Southgate is yet to get the best out of his England team / JAVIER SORIANO/GettyImages

“I think we are struggling both off the ball. I think the pressure in both games was not good and the ball was not balanced enough. Everyone fell a little below their standards. It was difficult to get out there, but we stayed calm, it was not our biggest game but we escaped with a point.

Kane, who scored for England in the first half, looked lonely ahead of the second leg and played 69 minutes before being withdrawn by the manager.

“We needed energy,” Southgate explained when asked about the decision live BBC One. “We had two games in a short time and we needed fresh legs, pressing power. I think Harry has only had 90 minutes in a month so it was a decision we made.”


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