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England’s Gareth Southgate: It would be a brave decision to leave Harry Kane out

Gareth Southgate said it would be a “brave decision” to leave Harry Kane out of England’s starting line-up against the United States after confirming the forward had come from training with a clean bill of health.

Kane took a knock after an awkward challenge from Morteza Pouraliganji in England’s 6-2 win over Iran on Monday – the national team’s biggest victory at the start of a major tournament.

The Spurs striker, who has a history of ankle problems, played for 25 minutes but was seen limping after the game and underwent a preventive examination.

However, Kane returned to training without a hitch and Southgate hinted that their captain will be there from the start on Friday.

“Harry is good,” he said. “He came in training, no problems, so it would be a brave decision to leave him out of the starting line-up.”

Southgate warned that he expected a different level of opposition from the Americans after England had a relatively easy opening against Iran.

“I think tomorrow’s game will be very different from the first game,” added Southgate.

“They are a team that presses the ball very well and have, with respect, probably a top player who has more experience playing in top-level European leagues.

“In terms of tomorrow’s game, it’s not going to be the standard of the previous one.”

Southgate insisted they would not be put off by Monday’s convincing victory.

“We are good at speaking highly of ourselves as a nation and based on very little evidence,” he added. “What we have to do is play on the pitch.

“We know that we are going to face a very motivated team, but we have great respect for our opponents, we know many of them from our championship and we know the quality and athletic capacity they have.

“The risk for us is thinking that because we played well the other day, we can just move on to the next game.

“We have to find that reset button to have the same psychology and determination. So I don’t think we’re going to underestimate the US team.

By Peter Kavinsky

Peter Kavinsky is the Executive Editor at cablefreetv.org