Nizhniy Novgorod, Sunday @peoplesports11
Hat-trick hero Harry Kane says “it’s all coming together” for England at the World Cup after Gareth Southgate’s side sailed into the last 16 with a 6-1 rout of Panama on Sunday.
Kane’s treble and two goals from John Stones, with Jesse Lingard also on the scoresheet, meant England joined Belgium on six points at the top of Group G ahead of the match between the two teams on Thursday.
“Fantastic,” Kane beamed in an interview with the BBC after leaping to the top of the World Cup Golden Boot scoring chart with five goals in two games.
He added: “So proud of the boys. Just enjoying it being here. We knew it was going to be tough but it’s all coming together. It’s a brilliant result, fantastic to be through and to do it in this way is great.”
The Tottenham Hotspur striker said England fans were justified in dreaming of winning the World Cup for the first time since 1966.
“We’re not getting too ahead of ourselves. We’ve got to keep it going but, yes, you have to believe. If you want to achieve anything in life you have to believe,” he said.
Meanwhile, soaking up the sunshine with a pint in hand, England fan Ife Runtwe reflected on his team’s five-star first half against Panama, calling it the “best England experience I’ve had in my life.”
The 25-year-old IT worker was one of around 50 happy, but slightly bemused fans who had spilled out of the Lord Raglan pub in the City of London following an uncharacteristically dominant display in Russia.
He paid tribute to manger Gareth Southgate, saying he had “done wonders, especially with the set-pieces”, and to the sense of togetherness within the squad.
“They feel a bit closer to the fans than previous teams and that probably comes from the manager,” added Runtwe, who was wearing a vintage 2001 England shirt.