Captain Harry Kane thinks England's players have been put on hold by the surprising 2-1 defeat at the Czech Republic on Friday night. The team of national team coach Gareth Southgate was able to secure an EC ticket in Prague, but instead lost a qualifier for the first time in ten years.
"The Czech Republic had the support of the public and the field was not very easy to play on, although they are not valid apologies. We are still in a good starting position, but this is a bit of a wake-up call", admitted a Kane disappointed in the first reaction with the English media.
Due to the loss in the Czech Republic, England saw an impressive series of 43 qualifying matches ending without defeat. After the loss against Ukraine in October 2009, 'The Three Lions' always remained unbeaten in qualifying matches for European and World Championships.
Incidentally, England had a dream start at Sinobo Stadium on Friday, as Kane scored a penalty in the fifth minute. Jakub Brabec made the equalizer four minutes later and the Czech Republic scored five minutes before the end by a goal from Zdenek Ondrásek.
"We were not as dynamic as we are and gave the ball way too often", 26-year-old Kane saw. "In the second half we were slightly better and we had a few chances, but unfortunately we didn't take advantage of it. We actually had the perfect start, but then we got very sloppy."
The players from the Czech Republic celebrate the winning goal. (Photo: Pro Shots)
Southgate finds victory in the Czech Republic
National coach Gareth Southgate agreed with his captain, although he thinks his team could have gotten a lot more out of the game. The first encounter between the two teams at Wembley ended in a resounding 5-0 win for the English, who again had plenty of opportunities.
"We might have had to draw a draw, but the final hit was typical of our game. We lost a lot of opportunities and were just not good enough, it's that simple," said Southgate, who wrote history with England at the 2018 World Cup by reaching the last four.
"We have received a lot of praise in recent years. It was difficult against the Czech Republic and we did not do enough to win the match. After the break we were more threatening and had good chances, but we gave the ball away too often."
Despite the defeat, there is still nothing going on for England, which after five duels is still the leader with twelve points. The Southgate team can secure an European Championship ticket on Monday if it takes three points at Bulgaria and Kosovo cannot win from Montenegro.
Stand in group A
- 1. England 5-12 (+14)
- 2. Czech Republic 6-12 (+2)
- 3. Kosovo 5-8 (0)
- 4. Montenegro 6-3 (-10)
- 5. Bulgaria 6-3 (-6)
View the program, the results and the positions in the European Championship qualification