England's Kane Out of Brazil Friendly, Doubtful for Belgium

England’s Kane Out of Brazil Friendly, Doubtful for Belgium

England’s captain, Harry Kane, will miss the upcoming friendly match against Brazil on Saturday due to an ankle injury sustained during Bayern Munich’s victory over Darmstadt last weekend. Kane’s absence extends to the potential match against Belgium next week, leaving him “extremely doubtful” for participation.

The injury setback comes at a crucial time for Kane, as England manager Gareth Southgate prepares to announce his squad for Euro 2024 in June. However, Kane remains confident in his place on the team despite the injury.

Other notable absentees from the England squad include Ajax midfielder Jordan Henderson and Chelsea forward Cole Palmer, who are also sidelined with injuries. Arsenal forward Bukayo Saka withdrew from the squad on Thursday due to an injury.

Southgate expressed concern over Kane’s injury, stating that he would be “extremely doubtful” for the Belgium match. However, he acknowledged the opportunity for Ollie Watkins and Ivan Toney to prove their worth as potential understudies to Kane at the Euros.

Watkins has scored three goals in nine international appearances, while Toney made his England debut as a substitute against Ukraine last year. Southgate emphasized the importance of versatility in his squad, hinting at the possibility of selecting players who can fulfill multiple roles.

Despite the absences, England remain favorites to defeat Brazil in their first match under new head coach Dorival Junior. The Selecao have won 10 of their last 11 friendlies against European opposition but will be eager to avoid a fourth consecutive loss since 2001.

Southgate acknowledged England’s poor record against Brazil but expressed confidence in his team’s ability to create history and test themselves against a formidable opponent.