23.06.2024 17:29 h

'Calm' Kane rounds on England's Euro 2024 critics

England captain Harry Kane said there was no need to panic over the Three Lions slow start to Euro 2024 as he rounded on critics back home of their performances in Germany.

Gareth Southgate's men have taken four points from their opening two games, but have not lived up to their billing as pre-tournament favourites.

Kane scored in Thursday's disappointing 1-1 draw against Denmark after an edgy 1-0 win over Serbia.

"We are calm. We have been here before. We've got a lot of experience, so it's not a time to panic," Kane told reporters on Sunday.

"I think always in these tournaments, especially these early stages, is almost like a boxer in the first couple of rounds trying to see where everyone is at, or a golfer in the first round of a major - don't play yourself out of tournament. That's kind of where we're at."

Victory against Slovenia on Tuesday will ensure that England top Group C and avoid a potential last 16 clash with Germany.

"If, before the tournament you'd have said we are where we are now, nearly qualified, we would have taken it for sure," added Kane.

"But we can be honest with ourselves that we haven't played the way we want to play

"Tuesday is important for the feeling of the group, we want to finish top and take the momentum into the knockout stages and just all round have a better feeling coming off the pitch to take that into the rest of the tournament."

Kane was on the end of a barrage of personal criticism from former England strikers Gary Lineker and Alan Shearer as England's performance against Denmark was lambasted in the media.

England have not won a major men's tournament since the 1966 World Cup and produced their best ever performance at the Euros three years ago when they lost the final on penalties to Italy.

Kane said he understood pundits have to give their opinions but called for some perspective from former players.

"The bottom line is we're trying to achieve something that as an England team we've never achieved in our history, so it's very tough," added the Bayern Munich striker.

"What ex-players who are pundits now have got to realise is that it's very hard not to listen to it now, especially for some players who are not used to it or some players who are new to the environment.

"The bottom line is we haven't won anything as a nation for a long, long time and a lot of these players were part of that as well, and they know how tough it is.

"It is not digging anyone out, it is just the reality that they know it's tough to play in these major tournaments and tough to play for England."