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Friday, 27 March 2015

Perfect game for Kane debut

Kane in action for the England U21's
All the talk in the build up to England’s Euro 2016 qualifier with Lithuania has been whether or not Harry Kane would be given the nod by manager Roy Hodgson to make his first senior international cap. With the news of Sturridge’s injury it now looks increasingly more likely the Spurs man will be thrown straight into the starting line up and he couldn't have asked for a better game to begin his international career.

It is always a big moment when representing your country for the first time, often an overwhelming experience that may impact on a players performance but in this case a home game against Lithuania is almost the perfect stage to begin an International career. Lithuania are no walkovers but in truth they are along way off the quality this English side posses and for a striker like Kane it is a great opportunity to get off the mark for his country as he can expect many chances against a weak defence and in the form he is in you would expect him to take these chances.

The Sturridge injury has made a Kane starting berth all the more likely but even before the injury, based on club form Kane is more deserving of a place in the starting 11 than Sturridge. Sturridge is only finding his feet after a lengthy absence whereas the young Spurs man is just off the back of scoring a Premier League hat-trick and is now level on goals with Diego Costa on 19 as the Premier League’s top scorer. These internationals also offer Kane a chance to overtake Sturridge as the key striker in the long term. Sturridge’s injury-prone nature makes him likely to miss a lot of games so if Kane can hit the ground running he could become Hodgson’s first choice.

Hodgson has preferred to play one man up front in his time as England boss but this game offers the chance to try two up front with Rooney and Kane the obvious choices. Rooney has been deployed as an attacking midfielder frequently for the Three Lions but after his performances up top for United recently he has made a claim to play in his favourite position at International level. Kane could miss out if Hodgson continues with the one man up front and puts Rooney in that position although a game against Lithuania seems a great opportunity to trial a partnership between Kane and Rooney, a partnership that on paper looks formidable.

Roy Hodgson may well decide tonight is not the right time for Kane to begin his international career, regardless the experience of being amongst the squad will benefit the 22-year-old greatly and he can expect to play a big role in Hodgson’s plans in the near future should he keep up his great club form.