Tottenham striker says he is ready for underhand tactics, but backs referees to get it right after Alves’ red card
London: Harry Kane is hoping England can rely on strong refereeing rather than over-acting to get the right decisions at Euro 2016 but said he is braced for underhand tactics from the opposition.
Kane showed admirable integrity against Portugal on Thursday night when Bruno Alves kicked him flush in the temple as he recklessly contested a bouncing ball.
Portugal defender Bruno Alves (left) fouls England striker Harry Kane to receive a red card during the friendly football match between England and Portugal at Wembley in London on Friday. Pic/AFP
Instead of rolling on the floor or feigning serious injury Kane brushed off the incident swiftly, though Italian official Marco Guida had seen enough to produce a red card.
His Tottenham team-mate Eric Dier suggested last week that England may need to be more 'streetwise' — read cynical — in their methods, but that does not come naturally to Kane. "I'm always someone who always gets up and doesn't make the most of it," said the striker, who escaped with nothing more than a couple of scratches.
"It's good that the ref stayed strong. Other refs might have thought it wasn't as bad as it was and maybe given him a yellow but it was a sending off at the end of the day.
"I know what Dier means but I think a lot of English players are known not to go down as easy as (players from) other countries.
"We'll see what happens come the tournament but hopefully the refs stay strong. We know we've got to be a bit cuter but if the refs are on their game, like they were here, we'll be fine."
There was a timely reminder at Wembley that not every player at the championship shares Kane's values.
In what appeared to be a brazen attempt to even up the numbers early in the second half, Portugal midfielder Danilo clutched his face and tumbled theatrically to the turf after a minor brush with Jamie Vardy. Guida again made the right call but England must be careful not to react to the antics of others.
Dele Alli's domestic season was cut short by a three-game ban when he lashed out at West Brom's Claudio Yacob, and the 20-year-old could now be a target for provocative treatment. "I think he's learned from that," noted Kane. "He knows international football is a lot more strict than the Premier League, he'll be doing all he can and I'm sure he'll be keeping his head and keeping his cool.
"That's international football, you've got to be ready for that. People are going to tread on your toes, kick you heels, pinch you. It's part of the game. You can't rise to it, you've got to stay focused and what I try and do is play my own game
and stick a few in the back of the net."