England are a "long way from perfection", says Southgate

Thursday, 21 Jun, 2018

Spurs star Kane struck early and again in the first minute of stoppage time as England began their World Cup campaign with a 2-1 victory.

"He always leads by example and there's no better way to do it than by scoring goals, like he has been doing".

For Harry to have a decent chance of winning the Golden Boot, England are probably going to have to get to the semi-finals, at least.

While Kane took the plaudits, his manager was more interested in England's cool heads under pressure as they refused to deviate from their measured possession game that Southgate has tried to hone. "There's no rush. You'll need these players, Gareth has mentioned that".

"I did not feel the midges because I was so focused on the team, on the game", Tunisia's Nabil Maaloul said. I want to be up there with the best in the world and the only way to do that is to perform on the big stage and in the big moments.

None of the first group matches so far have been scoreless and multiple players have scored braces to start the tournament. I think that he has outstanding potential, I hope tonight's given him a lot of belief, " he added.

Kane, who was frequently manhandled by Tunisian defenders in the penalty area, was in little doubt about the importance of the result.

"It's been a odd but very exciting time over the last few years and something that I'm ever so proud of", Maguire said on the eve of the tournament. For the first time since 2006, England won their opening group stage fixture at the World Cup. We have not done well in recent years and there is not much else than could go wrong.

"I felt positive at 1-1, the pace did drop off a bit".

Perhaps England could have changed from a back three to a back four in the second half, allowing them to put an extra man in midfield, because at times Tunisia had nobody up front.

"I think that mentality has to stay because you're not going to win every single game and when you do lose or when you do draw, you have to learn from it".

This electric video was shot inside the O2 Academy on Cookridge Street in Leeds, where nearly 1400 packed in to cheer on Gareth Southgate's troops to a 2-1 over Tunisia on Monday night. We've got Marcus Rashford, Raheem, Dele, Ruben (Loftus-Cheek), they've had fine seasons, Jesse has as well...

Guessing that 1pm on Sunday for the Panama game might not get quite the same level - but England play Belgium next week on Thursday (28 June) at 7pm, so that could see another stunning TV audience.