Harry Kane knows that England are not favorites to win the World Cup this summer, but that just means that they just might get underestimated. Kane, who was named by manager Gareth Southgate as England captain this morning, said in a press conference at St. George’s Park that the England squad’s youth could actually increase the likelihood that England wins the whole thing, although he admitted that it wouldn’t be easy.
“I think we can, I think we can win it. I think we’re not going to be favorites to win it. We know we’re not favorites to win it. But you look at this season, for example, no one would have thought Liverpool would have got to the Champions League final and they did. And you look at maybe Man United back in the Ferguson days when they had a young team and dominated the Premier League for years to come.
“So, it’s not really an excuse that we’re young – it could be a good thing.”
Kane is one of five Tottenham Hotspur players in Southgate’s England squad, the most of any Premier League club. Having scored 30 league goals this past season, Harry implied that he knows what it means to be England’s captain, but suggested that the pressure on this summer’s squad might not be as intense as it has on England players in past tournaments.
“I feel like the mentality… maybe we’re a bit afraid to say we want to win stuff because we’re afraid of the reaction of maybe the media or the fans, so maybe that has made players go into a bit of a shell. Whereas what I am trying to say is look, we’re not afraid to say we want to win it because every country wants to win it.
“We have to be brave, we have to take it on the chin. Whether we go out at the group stage or the semi-final, it’s the same – you don’t win the World Cup. That’s what we’ve got to try and discuss as players, to have no fear, just when we talk about it we want to win it and we go from there.”
“No matter how good our teams have been [in previous years], we haven’t been good enough. From our point of view now, we’ve got nothing to lose.”
Kane also admitted that he’s known for a while now that he was going to be named captain, but that he’s had to keep his mouth shut (lol) until the entire squad was notified this morning.
“I found out a few weeks ago. I met Gareth [Southgate] at The Grove when the squad were there. We were talking for an hour or so, and he basically just said he wanted me to be the captain.
“I’ve had to keep it quiet a while now but it’s fantastic. As soon as he told me, I just filled up with pride and obviously went home and told the family and they got excited as well. It was literally just the family, the close family; obviously my fiancee, mum and dad, and brother and that was about it.
“We spoke about when it was going to be announced and stuff, but I had to keep my lips sealed.”
England’s first World Cup match is June 18 against Group G opponents Tunisia in Volgograd.