England captain Harry Kane is now be almost certain to finish the World Cup as the tournament’s top scorer, but former Three Lions boss Sam Allardyce reckons the Spurs striker cost his Country the chance to secure a place in the final against France.
England dominated the first period of their semi-final clash against the Croats and had taken an early lead via a superb Kieran Trippier free kick, but Kane uncharacteristically shot tamely at Croatia ‘keeper Danijel Subasic when one-on-one, before striking the rebound against the post from a tight angle.
Croatia would begin to take control of the game in the second half and eventually ran out deserved 2-1 winners after extra time, and Allardyce reckons that squandering the opportunity to extend the lead to 2-0 ultimately cost Gareth Southgate’s men the game.
“What went against us was that the quality of our own finishing in open play – it let us down,” Allardyce told talkSPORT.
“Had we gone in 2-0 up, I don’t think there was any chance Croatia would have recovered from that. Particularly the double miss from Harry – as a striker, you’re employed not to miss those chances when they come along.
“I don’t want to be unkind to Harry Kane, because he’s an absolutely brilliant striker, but Raheem Sterling was in a much better position and that little ball across the box and a little tap in would have made it more certain.”
To be fair to Kane, especially when considering the suggestion that he should have passed the ball to Raheem Sterling, anybody who has seen the Manchester City attackers’ finishing at this World Cup would know that him simply tapping the ball into the Croatian net was far from a given.
England’s World Cup campaign came to an end today when they lost 2-0 to Belgium in the third place play off.