England train after thumping Iran win
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Harry Kane’s assist for Raheem Sterling in England’s 6-2 rout of Iran was ‘Kevin de Bruyne-like’, according to Netherlands icon Nigel de Jong. Kane has earned a reputation for his excellent creativity alongside his goalscoring exploits.
Sterling volleyed home Kane’s cross to give the Three Lions a 3-0 lead over Iran in their opening World Cup Group B clash on Monday. Goals by Jude Bellingham and Bukayo Saka had put Gareth Southgate’s side into a healthy lead before Sterling struck just before half-time.
It was an excellent finish by the Chelsea forward, who has struggled for goals since his summer transfer from Manchester City. But De Jong believes that Kane should take much of the credit for the goal because of his cross, which the former City midfielder likened to De Bruyne.
“It’s great for [Sterling]. He’s having a tough time, especially with his transition from Manchester City to Chelsea. I am very pleased he’s on the scoresheet. He’s always going to be one of the first names on the team sheet,” De Jong told ITV.
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“This pass from Kane, it’s a little bit Kevin de Bruyne-like, the way he put it and [then the finish isn’t easy] with the outside of his right foot.”
Kane faces a scan on an ankle injury he suffered in the victory, which could disrupt England’s preparations for Friday’s game against USA. The Tottenham star picked up an ankle problem in the 48th minute but played on until the 75th.
The 29-year-old hobbled off the pitch and was later seen in strapping. He will undergo tests to determine whether he is fit to play against the Americans.
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Kane would be a major miss for England given his three assists in the opening match. However, Callum Wilson replaced the Three Lions captain and grabbed an assist of his own in the final minutes of the game.
Newcastle forward Wilson raced through on goal and unselfishly passed to Jack Grealish. The Man City playmaker scored his second international goal.
Southgate attempted to allay fears of a serious injury for Kane in the aftermath of the game. He told journalists that Kane was ‘fine’ but news of a scan will prompt fresh concern.
The England boss said: “I think Harry’s fine. It looked like a bad tackle but he carried on in the game. We took him off because we felt it was a moment in the game we could do that.”
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