‘There is no middle ground with Kane… he needs to do more when he’s not at his best’: Roy Keane unimpressed by England captain as he’s hauled off by Gareth Southgate amid ongoing slump
- Harry Kane offered little in attack for England during their 1-1 draw with Hungary
- The Three Lions captain snatched at a couple of chances before being subbed
- Roy Keane believes the striker has to offer more when not in form in front of goal
- However, Ian Wright believes Kane’s tricky start to the season is just a mere blip
Roy Keane has criticised Harry Kane for not offering enough to the England team when he is struggling to put in his best performances.
Kane was largely anonymous on Tuesday evening as England laboured to a poor 1-1 draw at home to Hungary in a World Cup qualifier.
The Three Lions captain barely had a clear cut chance, before being substituted 14 minutes from the end a few seconds after slicing a poor effort wide.
Harry Kane reacts with frustration in a poor display leading England’s attack against Hungary
The Three Lions captain rarely looked a threat on a disappointing night for his side
Former Republic of Ireland and Manchester United Keane hit out at Kane’s display, claiming that the Tottenham Hotspur striker’s performances have been typically either outstanding or woeful.
‘There is no middle ground with Kane,’ Keane told ITV. ‘When he’s on fire he is fantastic and when he is off – and we’ve seen many times before – it’s like he is on his heels and he can’t get up to speed with the game.
‘Whatever is going on at club level he does need to do a bit more when he’s not at his best in terms of general play.’
Former Scotland midfielder John Collins though fears the 28-year-old could already be on the decline in his career claiming the striker is not as sharp as he was during his peak.
Kane snatched at a chance in the second half, as Roy Keane criticised his overall impact
With 14 minutes to play, Kane was withdrawn by England manager Gareth Southgate
Collins told ITV: ‘He’s lost a yard of pace; I don’t see an acceleration or a sharpness. That sharpness, in my eyes has gone.
While agreeing with Collins in that Kane’s pace was already dropping off, former Arsenal and England defender Lee Dixon believes he still has a crucial role leading England’s attack and that he will be back among the goals again.
‘We expect that of him every week, you go through patches,’ Dixon also told ITV. ‘Everything in the summer, it’s all come at once for him. He’s dipped in form and the team didn’t create an awful lot today.
‘He’ll start scoring goals again. I do agree with John, he’s lost that a little bit of sharpness, sluggish, shoulders down.
Kane laboured up top as he is beaten to a ball into the box by Hungary keeper Peter Gulacsi
Kane applauds England supporters following his side’s 1-1 draw with Hungary at Wembley
Dixon’s former team-mate at club and international level Ian Wright was also left concerned by Kane’s positioning off the ball.
‘At the moment he’s not playing well. He doesn’t look sharp,’ Wright said. ‘He’s playing in a way which has not become of Harry Kane.
‘He’s an elite striker and when he’s playing like this you are going to answer questions. But he doesn’t seem sharp – these instances where he should be staying onside, to get the opportunity, but he’s going deep and at the moment he doesn’t seem at the right place.’
But Wright also remained hopeful that Kane could negate his poor form and get back to leading Southgate’s side from the front..
It was left to centre-back John Stones to equalise for England as they struggled to a 1-1 draw
Gareth Southgate’s team though still remain on course to qualify for the World Cup finals
‘I just see someone who is not quite at it,’ Wright added. ‘He started the season very slowly and he needs to get up to speed as he’s a bit sluggish: a couple of offsides he could have avoided just being a bit more sharper thinking.
‘Harry Kane will be fine, he has just got to get himself going.’
England fell behind to a shock Rolland Sallai penalty after 24 minutes when Luke Shaw was penalised for a high boot, before John Stones equalised after diverting in a Phil Foden free-kick 13 minutes later.
But England failed to create little else in a World Cup qualifier marred by disgraceful scenes of Hungary fans clashing with police at Wembley in the early stages of the first half.
Despite the laboured draw, England need just four points from games against Albania and San Marino to guarantee their place at the World Cup finals in Qatar next year.
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