Scotland v England: Harry Kane is just one of many threats, says Craig Gordon

Scotland keeper Craig Gordon
World Cup qualifier: Scotland v England
Venue: Hampden Park, Glasgow Date: Saturday, 10 June Kick-off: 17:00 BST
Coverage: Listen on BBC Radio Scotland, live text commentary on BBC Sport website

Craig Gordon insists Scotland cannot afford to focus on in-form striker Harry Kane when England visit Hampden on Saturday in World Cup qualifying.

Tottenham Hotspur’s Kane finished as the Premier League’s top scorer for the second successive season, netting 29 times in the 2016-17 campaign.

But Gordon says his side will suffer if they pay too much attention to Kane.

“We can’t focus too much on one player because they do have threats all over the park,” the Celtic goalkeeper said.

“He’s had a fantastic season, finishing top scorer in England, so he’s another one we have to be wary of. But they have more than one.

Harry Kane

“They’ve got good goal threats from a number of areas. It’s up to us to try to nullify those.”

Kane, who will captain his country at Hampden, came in for criticism after talking about the possibility of netting a hat-trick at Hampden in Saturday’s Group F match.

Gordon said he does not have the “slightest” issue with those comments. In fact, he reckons Kane is right to target a goal haul.

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“I hope our strikers want to score a hat-trick as well,” Gordon said. “He’s a striker that wants to score goals – there’s nothing wrong with that whatsoever.”

‘We’ll have to play at our very best’

Scotland lost 3-0 at Wembley in October, when the sides first met in Group F, and while Gordon knows Southgate’s side are expected to triumph at Hampden, the goalkeeper insists confidence is high in Strachan’s squad.

“We got a good home win the last time [1-0 against Slovenia] and we know from that performance what we can do to hurt England,” he said.

“Of course England are favourites. We just have to go out and impose ourselves a bit more.

“I don’t think we feel overawed by this at all. They’re a good team and we respect that, but at the same time, we want to go out and put a performance on of our own.

“We do have to be brave. We might have to take the ball in tight areas and try to play football. We’ve got players that can do that, without a doubt, we’ve got players capable of hurting England.

“If we get enough of the ball and create chances, we fancy our chances to take one or two.

“We’ll have to play at our very best and if we do that then we give ourselves a chance, but we’ll need to defend really well, we’ll need to make blocks and throw our bodies on the line – do everything to keep the ball out of our net.”

World Cup Qualifying Group F

Scotland started six Celtic players in the win over Slovenia last time out and Gordon believes the confidence his club-mates can take from their unbeaten, domestic treble-winning season can only benefit the national side.

“We’ve had as good a season as we could’ve asked for, so if you’re not confident after that you’re never going to be,” he said.

“I think there will be a fair few Celtic players in the team that know what each other is capable of, so that’s going to stand us in good stead.”

BBC Sport – Football

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