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Harry Kane hopes Ben Stokes’ chat can inspire England at Euro 2024

Harry Kane hopes Ben Stokes’ chat can inspire England at Euro 2024

Harry Kane hopes a pre-Euro 2024 chat with England Test cricket captain Ben Stokes can provide inspiration against Slovakia on Sunday.

Stokes visited the England team at their training camp in Middlesbrough before Gareth Southgate’s men left for Germany.

After topping their group despite widespread criticism of their performance, England now face Slovakia in Gelsenkirchen for a chance to reach the quarter-finals of Euro 2024.

Stokes was invited by Southgate to speak to the squad and skipper Kane revealed he spent an hour picking the brains of a man who won the World Cup in 2019 and the T20 equivalent three years later.

“Stoksey was at Rockliffe and I thought he was great,” Kane said.

“First of all, what a great guy. We all know how successful he has been and it was great for many of us to talk to him.

“We talked for an hour, going through the highs and lows of his career and what he did to maintain a high level and also to improve. I found it really useful.

I think the biggest thing I probably got from talking to Ben (Stokes) was that it’s not necessarily about attacking, it’s more about making sure everyone feels comfortable.

England captain Harry Kane

“He is a great guy, he speaks very well and he has had great experiences in his sport under the highest pressure. So yeah, that was very nice of him to come and do that.

“It’s something we’ve done over the years. Gareth is very excited about athletes from other sports coming to help us in different environments. The boys enjoyed having Ben there.”

Stokes, along with head coach Brendon McCullum, introduced an attacking style of play to Test cricket, thus giving birth to ‘Bazball’.

Kane and his teammates have been criticized for three lackluster performances during the group stages in Germany, but explained that in his conversation with Stokes he explained the basics of ‘Bazball’, which does not mean going all out on the attack against Slovakia.

“I think the biggest thing I probably got from the conversation with Ben (Stokes) was that it’s not necessarily about attacking, it’s more about making sure everyone is comfortable with what they’re doing,” Kane added.

“If you want to play a certain way, you play the way you want to play. It’s not like everyone has to do the same thing, everyone has to go all out and attack. It’s more ‘what is your best way to score runs ?Okay, do that then’.

“It’s more about making sure everyone feels comfortable in their environment. If you’re going to play outside, make sure they feel comfortable. That’s the most important thing.

“This tournament is not a goal-heavy tournament in general and we didn’t score many goals. It’s about feeling comfortable on the pitch. We have a plan and it’s about executing that plan.

England have struggled for goals at Euro 2024 (Martin Rickett/PA)
England have struggled for goals at Euro 2024 (Martin Rickett/PA) (PA wire)

“That’s the most important thing, that people do what they feel – in high-pressure games or big games – then you come out and do your best.

“I feel like we’ve been ruthless on the defensive side, in terms of blocks, crosses and winning balls, and now it’s up to me, the attacking players and maybe the midfielders to maybe be a little more ruthless in the final third of the match. pitch.”

The reaction to England’s campaign in Group C, in which they beat Serbia 1-0 and then drew with Denmark and Slovenia, led to a lot of negativity towards Southgate.

I think we’ve been very good at that in recent tournaments and this tournament is no different.

Harry Kane

The 53-year-old said after the stalemate in Slovenia that he wants all criticism to be directed at him and not his players – but Kane insists they are all in this together.

“I think we all look at it as a team,” he added.

“We all want to help each other. We are all part of the same team, whether it is the staff or the players. We all have a responsibility to try to win this tournament and ultimately we are the ones on the pitch to make that happen.” to happen.

“The boss prepares us as best he can, as he always does, and it’s up to us to execute it.

Gareth Southgate is under pressure from England fans (Adam Davy/PA)
Gareth Southgate is under pressure from England fans (Adam Davy/PA) (PA wire)

“It’s not the first time there has been a fuss about the manager since I became an England player.

“So I think we know how to deal with it. We know what we’re doing here. We trust the process, we trust everything we believe in. And the rest is just noise. It is something that blocks you and focuses on yourself.

“I think we’ve been really good at that in the last few tournaments and this tournament is no different.”