• News

Southgate explains Kane substitution in England’s draw with Scotland

Harry Kane, Gareth Southgate, England
Getty Images

After a disappointing draw with Scotland in a Euro 2020 clash, England boss Gareth Southgate explained why he substituted Harry Kane.

Harry Kane was substituted to give England ‘more runs in behind’, says Gareth Southgate.

The England captain had just six touches inside Scotland’s box as the Three Lions settled a lackluster 0-0 draw at Wembley. In fact, he mustered only 19 touches overall and completed 63% of his passes. It was an underwhelming performance to say the least, and far below his usual standards.

Southgate eventually replaced Kane with Marcus Rashford in the 74th-minute. But the Manchester United star, who got the nod over Dominic Calvert-Lewin, couldn’t turn the tide in England’s favor.

“I think it was a frustrating night, we know we can play better,” Southgate told ITV Sport. “You have to give Scotland credit. We didn’t do enough to win the game. If you can’t win a game in a tournament, you make sure you don’t lose it.”

On Kane’s substitution, the England coach said: “I felt that we needed a few more runs in behind. I felt Marcus would give us that energy. We had to try and get the win at that point.

“We have to make these decisions based on what we see. I think the whole team, we can look at ourselves, it starts with me, we’ve got to do better. Not enough attempts on goal.

“I think we’re still working those patterns, we’re playing at a very high level of games, huge intensity, to find space tonight was really difficult. Scotland defended really well.

“I think I know exactly where this team is, it’s a very young team, some of them won’t have experienced that intensity and pressure, that’s a huge learning for them. We have to improve for our next game.”

England now sit second in Group D and level on four points with leaders Czech Republic, who are ahead due to a superior goal difference.

The Three Lions, therefore, must win Tuesday’s showdown between the two teams to win the group.