Gareth Southgate urged to drop Harry Kane as Ally McCoist demands 'bold' decision

England boss Gareth Southgate has been urged to axe captain Harry Kane following the Three Lions' lacklustre 1-1 draw against Denmark.

Kane scored England's opener, but only had 22 touches before he was replaced by Ollie Watkins with 20 minutes to go. The goal was Kane's only touch inside the box and Southgate has admitted the forward is struggling with his fitness after missing the final weeks of the season with a back injury.

"We felt with the three front players that they played the bulk of the game the other day and we needed to get some legs onto the pitch," he explained. "Harry's only had one 90 minutes in five or six weeks. Given what the other game took out of us, given the heat against Denmark, we needed to press better towards the end of the game and it was always in our mind that all of the forward players might need freshening at that point."

Former England defender Stuart Pearce has claimed Kane should be dropped for the game against Slovenia, suggesting Southgate needs to "get more energy in the team". And fellow pundit Ally McCoist agrees with his assessment, claiming Watkins "might be a better option" to lead the line.

Speaking to BoyleSports, who will offer early payout on Euro 2024 matches this summer, McCoist said: "Stuart Pearce is 100% right when it comes to being bold enough to drop Harry Kane, I include everybody.

"I don't just include Harry Kane in that. It doesn't matter who you are. It's similar to Cristiano Ronaldo, the fact of the matter is, if it benefits the team, you think there's a substitution required, whether it's Harry Kane, Ronaldo, it doesn't matter who it is.

gareth southgate urged to drop harry kane as ally mccoist demands 'bold' decision

Gareth Southgate and Harry Kane

"That's when the manager earns his corn. You've got to make a decision.

"Sometimes your decisions have to be brave and they might go against the grain. But if you think it's for the benefit and it's beneficial to the team moving forward, then it's a decision, it's a no-brainer.

"You have to make that decision. Pearce is spot on. It doesn't matter if it's Harry Kane, if he's not playing well then it might be a better option with Ollie Watkins using his pace running through. I don't know. But if there is a better option available, then he has to make that decision."

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