Pundit criticises Harry Kane for getting ‘distracted’ at times for England

Harry Kane
Chris Brunskill/Fantasista/Getty Images

Matthew Upson believes Tottenham striker Harry Kane was too preoccupied with dropping deep into midfield to receive the ball during England’s 1-0 defeat to Hungary in the UEFA Nations League. 

The Three Lions produced a blunt display in their opening group match in Budapest as they were undone by a second half penalty from Dominik Szoboszlai. 

Spurs talisman Kane started and captained the side in the defeat, but struggled to get involved for large parts of the encounter. 

The 28-year-old often strayed into midfield to pick up possession and distribute it, but it took him away from key areas up front and in and around the penalty area. 

And Kane’s display frustrated former England defender Upson, who felt the Spurs man was ‘distracted’ by wanting to be a part of the build-up play instead of carrying out a traditional striker role. 

Upson told BBC Sport (19:11): “There are always difficult questions after a loss, especially in a game many would think England should win. 

“It is about Harry Kane getting in danger areas. He played more central in that number nine role in the second half but in the first, he was so wide and deep. If I’m a centre-back for Hungary I am delighted.

“Harry Kane has not been in those key areas enough. I can only really remember him having that one shot early on. He has almost been distracted by having to be involved in the build-up and trying to get England going. It is not really his responsibility, although he feels the pressure to fulfil that role.”

Spurs Web Opinion 

Kane cannot be blamed for the way England lost as him dropping into midfield to pick up possession did not directly contribute to them suffering defeat in this game. 

He has done it so often for England and Spurs to good effect too, and he obviously tried to do that against Hungary having seen those around him also struggling to make things happen. 

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