Poland 1 England 1: Three Lions suffer last minute heartache as Kane's screamer is wiped out by Szymanski header

HARRY KANE is clearly in a rush to smash Wayne Rooney’s record.

So on a night when the captain was getting very little help from his team-mates, the England captain decided to do something about it.

Harry Maguire was booked after a huge melee between both sets of players that appeared to be sparked by Kamil Glik grabbing Kyle Walker's beard.

Poland ruined the night with a leveller from Damian Szymanski in injury time. But ultimately, a draw in England’s toughest group stage is hardly a disaster.

Kane’s goal, yet again, proved why he is such an outstanding player and why he will, no doubt, soon overtake Jimmy Greaves, Gary Lineker and Bobby Charlton before taking his place in history.

And at this rate, it will happen before next year’s World Cup in Qatar which they will surely qualify for.

England looked certain to hang on for the win but there were some tired legs at the end and Robert Lewandowski, rather than scoring the leveller, turned provider.

But of the two strikers on show last night, it was Kane who made his mark.

For those who think Kane only scores penalties or against weaker teams, here was the ultimate poor.

Kane received a pass from Kyle Walker, made space for himself and then unleashed a shot from 30 yards past Arsenal keeper Wojciech Szczęsny.

Until then, Kane had barely seen the ball because while Jack Grealish and Raheem Sterling were painting pretty pictures, they were not causing some real damage.

And on another impressive night for this maturing side, Declan Rice was once again outstanding in the heart of midfield and once again, England defence kept a clean sheet.

You could argue this was England’s most difficult qualifier for a major tournament since they last came to this fine stadium in 2012.

The World Cup qualifier was delayed by 24 hours due to a waterlogged pitch as the Polish FA did not bother to close the roof despite the dodgy weather forecast.

Roy Hodgson’s players took sleeping tablets in an attempt to get some kip in Warsaw and then delivered a dozy performance in a 1-1 draw although they still qualified for the 2014 tournament in Brazil before stinking the place out by finishing bottom of their group.

Those days seem an age ago, though. England will be heading to the Middle East next November not merely looking to get out of their group but will be hoping, almost expecting, to reach the semi-finals at least.


Declan Rice once again produced a powerful performance in central midfield while his partner, Kalvin Phillips delivered a patchy display but he was on thin ice the moment he picked up an early yellow card.

With no England fans among the 56212 crowd, God Save the Queen was greeted with jeers followed by rapturous applause from the home fans, which felt a bit odd. 

England’s players suffered a hostile reaction to taking the knee with all of Poland’s players staying on their feet. Fair play to Lewandowski who pointed to the respect logo on his shirts as the whistles echoed around the arena.

And the game, throughout, had a really niggly edge to it, something we have not seen much in any of the previous qualifiers.

Southgate’s team delivered a scrappy, disjointed performance in the 45 minutes, a bit like the game against Hungary six days earlier although here, they were playing a much better team.

The only truly interesting moment of the game arrived seconds after the half-time whistle when Maguire reacted furiously to striker Kamil Glik and this sparked a shoving match between most of the players.

Maguire is a vocal, exceptionally solid defender and was once again impressive here. He is certainly not a fiery type but was absolutely raging and had to be held back by his team-mates.

Glik was captured pinching Walker's neck just moments but the Manchester City defender did not react yet Maguire was certainly incensed about something.

The rest of the England team were back in the changing rooms with only captain Kane keeping a watchful eye on Maguire and Glik who both received a talking two from Siebert before both being shown yellow cards.

Grealish shot across the face of the goal, Maguire steered Luke Shaw’s free-kick against the post, Lewandowski struck a long-range shot at Pickford.

But it took something special from Kane to change the game from 30 yards with 18 minutes left. Jordan Pickford, crazily, kicked the ball at substitute Karol Swiderski but got away with it.

But with England tiring, Lewandowski crossed and Szymanski rose high above Shaw to power home his first goal for his country.

While it sparked mayhem in the stands, Southgate will have left the pitch more than happy.

And with four qualifiers still to go, Southgate can plan for Qatar2022, not that it has ever been in doubt.

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