“I would leave him on the bench against the Czechs.”
Jamie Carragher believes Harry Kane should be left out of Gareth Southgate’s starting XI for England’s final group game against the Czech Republic on Tuesday.
A draw will be enough for both England and the Czech Republic to progress to the knockout stages of Euro 2020 and Carragher is of the opinion that resting Kane will prove crucial if he is to recapture the form he showed for Tottenham Hotspur last season.
Kane has come in for considerable criticism for his performances so far at Euro 2020 and while many likely thought he would be in the running for top goalscorer at the tournament, he hasn’t looked close to scoring so far.
Carragher has urged Southgate to leave Kane on the bench for Tuesday’s match in the hope that the forward comes back reinvigorated for the Round of 16.
“The issues I raised about Harry Kane in the aftermath of the Croatia game were apparent again. Those observations were never about being critical or negative for the sake of it,” Carragher wrote in his Telegraph column.
“The only way England can go far in this tournament is with a fit and on-form Kane so everything Southgate does in his team selection and set-up must be about getting the best from him.
Jamie Carragher with some advice for Gareth Southgate
“That is why – for his and the team’s sake – I would leave him on the bench against the Czechs. It’s not about ‘dropping’ him. It’s about thinking ahead, revitalising Kane for the last-16 tie which is going to be against a much stronger opponent than Tuesday’s.
“He can recharge mentally and physically, liaising with the sports science team and formulating a plan to get himself right for the likely meeting with France, Portugal or Germany in eight or nine days’ time.
“That would still be a brave decision by Southgate. What I like about Gareth is he is not shy to make those big calls, as shown when he changed a winning team against the Scots.”
Kane was hauled off after 74 minutes against Scotland on Friday night, when England played out a 0-0 stalemate with their British rivals.
While Kane has been ridiculed for his inability to find the net for England so far at Euro 2020, Carragher insisted that the lack of chances being created is much more concerning, while the Liverpool legend also voiced his disappointment about the English fans’ reaction to Friday’s draw at Wembley.
“It has to be a worry that they are not creating enough chances, or working opposition goalkeepers enough,” Carragher added.
“That was the most disappointing aspect of the performance against Scotland, but the jeering of the team at full-time was embarrassing. I will never understand how anyone could deem that justified or helpful, especially directing it at such talented, young players.”