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misfiring Don’t fret, I will hit peak for knockouts, insists England striker Harry Kane


Harry Kane believes he will rediscover his goalscoring touch at the Euros

Harry Kane believes he will rediscover his goalscoring touch at the Euros

Harry Kane believes he will rediscover his goalscoring touch at the Euros

Harry Kane says he is ready to “peak” going into the knockout stages of the European Championship, and has spent his whole career proving the doubters wrong.

The England captain failed to score in the three group games, which led to questions over his fitness and whether he was distracted by his desire to leave Tottenham Hotspur this summer.

Having finished the last World Cup as top scorer, with six goals – five of which came in group games – Kane said he could be about to do the opposite and score more heavily in the “most important games”, starting with Tuesday’s last-16 tie against Germany.

“People are quick to change their mind. It wasn’t too long ago when I won the Golden Boot (as Premier League’s top scorer) and I was the best thing in the world, people were raving about me. That’s why I’ve always said, as a footballer, you can’t get too high or too low, you just have to have that neutral mode, self-belief is a huge thing,” he said.

“I’ve always believed in myself. I could go 10, 15 games without scoring, but give me a chance and I’d back myself to score it. I’m in a good place. Going into Tuesday night, physically, I’m in the best shape of the tournament so far, and that’s what I wanted going into this. I felt maybe in Russia (in the 2018 World Cup) I started on fire, scored loads of goals, then, maybe, didn’t have my best performances in the most important games, the quarters and the semi-finals.

“So, physically, I wanted to make sure I was peaking at the right time, and we won’t know until Tuesday night if that’s the case, but the way I feel, that’s the way I feel it’s going.”

Kane has been questioned in the past – after his breakthrough campaign at Tottenham, he met head on the claim he was going to be a “one-season wonder” – and he continues to react in the same way.

“It’s definitely not the first time people have doubted me in my career, that’s for sure,” the 27-year-old said. “I’ve said all along, as a striker, you go through some great spells where you are scoring every game and everything you touch turns into goals, and then there are some where things don’t fall your way, the ’keeper makes some saves. That’s probably the way it’s gone in this tournament so far.

“For me, it is about trying to peak at the right time, and the right time in tournament football is the knockout stages. I feel good, I feel sharp.”

Kane has made it clear that he wants to leave Spurs. Manchester City have informed him that they have put together an opening offer of up to £100 million (€116m). He insisted the uncertainty over his future has not affected his form.

“When I come away with England, I’m just fully focused on England,” he said. “My brother is my agent, but the only time I’ve spoken to my brother over the last few weeks is, ‘Good luck, let’s get a win, and let’s take England all the way’. So, it doesn’t bother me about the outside noise.”

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Telegraph Media Group Limited [2021]