TOTTENHAM striker Harry Kane has been elevated to the England senior squad for the first time because he excited the whole country, manager Roy Hodgson said yesterday.
Kane’s 26 goals in 42 games this season have earned him a place in Hodgson’s squad for a Euro 2016 qualifier against Lithuania and a friendly with Italy at the end of March.
The 21-year-old’s inclusion as one of just four strikers in a 24-man party came at the expense of West Brom’s Saido Berahino, Charlie Austin of QPR and Burnley’s Danny Ings. But Hodgson insisted he had little choice to summon a player who in six months has gone from the fringes of the Spurs team to leading English scorer in the Premier League.
“The whole country is excited. His rise has been fantastic. Since he’s broken into the Tottenham team he’s done so well,” he said.
“It would have been much more of a surprise had he not been selected than him being selected. He’s young, like a lot of the other players in the squad who’ve been given the chance to establish themselves. We hope that’s going to happen for Harry as well.
“We do know quite a lot about him, not least of all from his work with the Under-21s. I worked with him myself for a period of two or three days when I took charge of the Under-21 team.”
Kane’s club colleague Kyle Walker has been recalled following the right-back’s recovery from long-term injury, as have defender Phil Jones and midfielders Michael Carrick and Fabian Delph.