England manager Gareth Southgate believes captain Harry Kane will have a “clear focus” when he joins up with Three Lions next week after his club future was decided on Wednesday.
Tottenham striker Kane was a summer-long target for Premier League champions Manchester City until he pledged his future to Spurs in a social media post earlier in the week.
The 28-year-old captained England to the final of Euro 2020, where they lost on penalties to Italy, and was included in Southgate’s squad for the upcoming 2022 World Cup qualifiers against Hungary, Andorra and Poland despite not starting any of Tottenham’s first three games of the season.
It was incredible to see the reception from the Spurs fans on Sunday and to read some of the messages of support I've had in the last few weeks. 👏⚽
— Harry Kane (@HKane) August 25, 2021
With speculation over his future put to bed, Southgate believes his skipper will be mentally ready for the triple header, even if he is currently unsure of his physical condition.
“We are going to have players who are short of competitive match minutes because our players ended up back later than the rest,” he said.
“So some of them have had some pre-season games but one or two like John Stones have not had a match yet this season.
“Harry is in that bracket – the good thing from our point of view is that it looks as though everything is resolved and settled now club-wise so he has a clear focus and I am sure he is looking forward now to getting out on the pitch with Tottenham and with us next week.
“It’s not really any of my business as an international manager when players are coming back from injury, involved in transfer speculation or whatever their form may be, those are things we have to pick up.”
While Kane staying at Tottenham means he will be plying his trade in the Europa Conference League and not the Champions League but Southgate does not feel that will impact on his performances with England.
“We had four or five players in and around our starting teams (at Euro 2020) who had played no European football, I think, in their lives.
“Jordan Pickford, Declan Rice, Kalvin Phillips, Jack Grealish… of course, ideally, you want your players playing in those big competitions.
“But it does not necessarily mean they cannot go into an international tournament and play at a fantastic level, because those other players did.
“Their club situations are what they are.
“We always pick up the aftermath – whatever is going on at players’ clubs, sometimes that can give them motivation, sometimes they can come off the back of a final that they’ve lost and it something we have to deal with.
“We are very much used to that. I don’t know if there are any other players who might be on the move before we meet.
“That is very often the case in September as well. But in terms of Harry’s situation, it is settled. It looks like he is going to be a Tottenham player and that’s fantastic for Tottenham especially.”