England striker Harry Kane is adamant that captaining the Three Lions at the World Cup will not impact on his game ahead of their opening Group G clash with Tunisia.
Kane netted five goals in England's qualification campaign and 30 Premier League goals for Tottenham last term, was handed the armband by Gareth Southgate prior to the England squad travelling to their Repino base.
And the 24-year-old, who caused a stir when he controversially claimed a goal against Stoke City as he battled Liverpool's Mohammed Salah for the Premier League Golden Boot, says the captaincy will not change his style of play, claiming he always prioritises the team's requirements.
"Whatever anyone says, my game has always been about putting the team first," Kane said.
"For me, nothing changes whether I am captain or not. I make the best decision for the team – and hopefully it's the right one.
"I feel exactly the same now as I did before I was captain. I don't feel any extra pressure just because I'm wearing the armband. My game won't change. Certainly my personality won't change.
"I still look to push myself, to push other players, and I hope my team-mates can now look at me as someone they can talk to. But I'm still the same man. I haven’t changed.
"I don't feel that just because I am captain I don't have to maintain the standards I have set. When you are England's striker, you have a responsibility to score the goals."
Barring a late injury, Kane is a certainty to start at the Volgograd Arena on Monday, with Southgate having already decided upon his starting XI.
However, Southgate is not concerned by any complacency setting in, insisting that England's supporting cast will be ready when required.
"They're ready," Southgate told England's official website. "They know the way we want to play. They're clear on the opposition.
"The players know the team and I think that's helpful. Everything's settled. They know their jobs.
"The guys that aren't in the team, they're prepared and they've trained well. They become a key part of what we do now.
"Their role is even more important. They have to support the team and be ready, because anything can happen. We only progress as a collective."
16 de julio 2018
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