Former England manager Fabio Capello has branded current Three Lions captain Harry Kane one of the best forwards of all time.
England are preparing to face Italy and Germany in the final international break before the World Cup, a period in which Kane could become his country’s all-time leading goalscorer with the Tottenham forward currently just three goals behind current record holder Wayne Rooney.
Capello, speaking to Sky Sports, said Kane is ‘England’s most important player’ because of how often he is involved in his side’s build-up play, after acknowledging the quality of the 29-year-old.
When asked if Kane is one of the great forwards the game has even seen, Capello said: ‘I think so. He is lucky enough to be coached by [Antonio] Conte, who has helped him improve.
‘Kane doesn’t just wait for the ball. Now he drops off and is involved in the build-up. He is a player who scores goals and gets assists.
‘Looks at the greats, such as the Brazilian Ronaldo. He didn’t get many assists, he just scored goals. Kane is a player who gets involved in the build-up and he’s often the player getting an assist and setting up his team-mates. I think he is England’s most important player.’
England will face Iran on November 21 in their opening game of the World Cup, which is being held in the winter for the first time ever due to extreme summer temperatures in host country Qatar.
Capello, who managed the Three Lions between 2007 and 2012, suggested the side are more likely to succeed at the Qatar World Cup because it is taking place during the season.
‘I’m really interested to see who comes out on top at the World Cup in Qatar,’ he said.
‘As a former England coach, when I coached the team in September, October and November, we were ready to face the best sides in the world. In March and April, it was so-so because the physical level was dropping and we then found it very tough in June.
‘I want to test my theory that England are a great side in this period of the year, so besides having talented players and a top coach, can they be really competitive and win a major tournament such as the World Cup?’
Gareth Southgate’s side will be one of the favorites to win the competition having reached the semi-finals in 2018 and the final of Euro 2020.
They face Italy in Milan on Friday before hosting Germany on Monday in their final two matches before the tournament kicks off.