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Harry Kane: England are going to be disappointed if they fail to win Euro 2024

Harry Kane will continue to captain England at Euro 2024 (Adam Davy/PA)
Harry Kane will continue to captain England at Euro 2024 (Adam Davy/PA)

Harry Kane admits tournament near-misses are no longer good enough as the England skipper targets glory at Euro 2024.

The Bayern Munich striker will lead England out in their Group C opener against Serbia in Gelsenkirchen on Sunday night, becoming the first man to captain the nation in four major tournaments.

The previous three have offered so much for Gareth Southgate’s side, with Kane winning the Golden Boot as England reached the semi-finals of the 2018 World Cup before losing on penalties to Italy in the Euro 2020 final at Wembley.

Defeat to France saw them eliminated in the quarter-finals at the 2022 World Cup, despite some impressive displays in Qatar.

With performances and expectation growing with each passing opportunity, Kane believes anything other than winning Euro 2024 will be deemed as a failure for England.

“Yes, I think so,” he replied when asked if the team was now at the stage when near-misses are not deemed good enough.

“We have spoken a lot about having a great tournament and it doesn’t always mean that you win the tournament and I think we’ve had a few of those.

“I think the last three tournaments, of course the last Euros coming extremely close to getting over the line, but I think we’re all at that stage now where, yes, we want to have a great tournament, want to make everyone proud but we want to win.

“We feel like we’re in a position where we definitely have enough in the squad to do that. We also know we’re starting a very tough tournament, no English side has ever won it before.

“So it’s going to be extremely tough but I think just with the experiences that we’ve had, not just at international level, but club level as well will help us but I think, for sure we are at that stage now where anything other than winning we’re going to be disappointed.”

While Kane has a World Cup Golden Boot, is England’s all-time leading scorer and hit 44 goals in 45 games in his maiden season at Bayern, team silverware continues to elude the 30-year-old and he admits his continued lack of trophy success has left him more “determined and hungry” to lead England to glory this summer.

“It would mean a lot, I love playing for my country, I love playing for England,” he said.

“It means the world to me every time I step out on the pitch wearing a shirt. I think winning a major tournament with England would be one of the pinnacles of anyone’s career so that is the aim.

“For me personally, the trophies haven’t quite happened yet but it just makes me more determined and more hungry to go out there and do that.

“I am extremely proud of what I have achieved in my career so far but I also know that of course I want to have trophies to show for it.

“From my point of view, as I’ve said before, I feel like I’ve got many years ahead of me, I feel like I’m in a real peak in my career and hopefully for the next four or five years especially that will be the case.

“I know what I am capable of. I know what I have done year after year. There is no reason why I cannot be the top scorer at this tournament. That confidence is still there.

“My experience on the pitch, being in different formations and playing in different roles in teams has helped me understand the game even better. That is why I said earlier about being at my peak. It is not just my physical peak.

“I am in a really comfortable place in my career in terms of what I am capable of but as always in these tournaments, I will be judged on goals and how many I get – so hopefully I will get a few.”