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Harry Kane Saves the Day but England Look Static and Sloppy

20 Juin 2018

Manchester City's Kyle Walker needlessly gave away a penalty - converted by Ferjani Sassi - and England visibly shrunk thereafter, probing instead of penetrating, but eventually found a victor in the nick of time.

"We are proud of each other and in a World Cup you are not sure how it is going to go, but we have a great togetherness and are always proud to see it come off in the game".

Certainly a nail-biter of a match for England fans!

There's nothing like a last-minute victor to get football fans celebrating.

"We've not talked about last night specifically, but we've had conversations about it previously".

"In the back of our minds, we thought that it could be one of those days where it doesn't go our way", Kane said after the match.

Hopes have been built up many times and yet, this time around, such an escalating of expectations has been absent.

On the biggest stage of all, it had taken him just 11 minutes to open his account as England swept forward in waves.

"We created a lot of clear-cut chances in the first half, as many as I remember, but we have to learn to be ruthless with those".

"There were things in the game that we couldn't control tonight that we reacted really well to".

However, his previous two substitutions were masterstrokes.

England then worked another fine move as Dele Alli fed in Lingard, who squared the ball for Sterling who somehow got his feet wrong and sent the ball wide of an empty net. "They kept going, kept going to the last second".

"It's part of the game", Kane told reporters post-match.

The Three Lions fully deserved that win, but a moment of madness from Kyle Walker had seen an opening day win put in jeopardy.

If I was at the world cup, it wouldn't have anxious me from what I seen.

Rashford came on a second-half substitute at the Volgograd Arena. It shows good character to get on with it and that's what we've done.

Khazri, who cost £9 million but was oddly omitted by David Moyes during Sunderland's Premier League relegation season, scored nine goals in 23 Ligue 1 starts in 2017/18. His PR work over the past few months can not be understated.

To witness a man who is usually such a beacon of calm and serenity throwing his arms aloft and screaming his passion and joy was wonderful to watch.

But this is Gareth Southgate's England!

Last night's win was by no means the finished article or the ideal performance.

"The best teams in the world keep that belief in what they're doing", Southgate said, "and in the end they break the opposition down".

Harry Kane Saves the Day but England Look Static and Sloppy