England and Spurs forward Harry Kane talks to Telegraph Men about life in the England squad, his secret table tennis powers, and his 2018 World Cup dream
What is your biggest memory of watching England at a World Cup?
“I think 2002 was the one that stands out the most. It was the first time I really realised what was happening. Obviously going out in the quarter finals to Brazil is still heartbreaking to this day, but it was a great tournament and one we did very well in. It was a close one for us.”
England face Brazil again this week [Kane has withdrawn from the squad due to injury]. Which Brazilian players did you enjoy watching as a kid?
“I think the older Ronaldo – even watching stuff on YouTube, you see he was one of the best, if not the best striker, who has ever lived. He had everything and made the game look so easy, so he was someone I definitely looked up to. He was an incredible player really.”
Who were your England idols when you were growing up?
“I think people like David Beckham, Paul Gascoigne and Teddy Sheringham were players who were playing well as I was growing up so they were big idols of mine.”
Do you still watch and learn from other players?
“I think there are always people you can look up to – Ronaldo and Messi now set the standard so that is the standard other players have got to try to reach. It is always good to try to pick up little things from other players.”
What is the best moment of your England career so far?
“My favourite moment has to be my debut and my goal. To come on and make my debut was a dream come true and then to score so quickly into it was just mind-blowing really. It still gives me goosebumps to this day.”
How do the players relax in between training sessions?
“I love golf but we don't get to play it too much during busy camps. We play table tennis too but sometimes I just like to chill and watch box-sets. I am quite relaxed so anything like that is fine.”
Who is the best table tennis player in the squad?
“I am pretty up there. I don't play it too much but whenever I step up there people do fear me! I know Raheem Sterling is good. Marcus Rashford is quite good too.”
Who chooses the music in the England changing room?
“Joe Hart normally does it. He has a bit of everything, to be fair. He is normally the one who puts his phone on before games and he does a good job so he gets to keep the DJing role.”
Who is the strongest in the gym?
“I would probably have to go with Fraser Forster. You can see he is just a monster so he is definitely up there.”
Who is the fastest player in the squad?
“I think Kyle Walker is probably one of the quickest in the team but you've got Rashford who is definitely up there and Raheem Sterling as well.”
What pleases you most about England’s pre-World Cup form?
“We have done really well. I think in certain games we have had a few last-minute goals, which is good. We want to be the team scoring in the last minute instead of conceding in the last minute so that is always a positive. It’s been a really good campaign, we are unbeaten, we have had to grind out certain results and we have come from behind in certain games.”
What would it mean for you to play in the World Cup finals next year?
“It would be a dream come true. It would be an incredible, incredible feeling and I am sure the atmosphere will be amazing. I watched the World Cups when I was growing up and I always wanted to be a part of it and hopefully I will be next year.”
Harry Kane is supporting the Bobby Moore Fund International, which sees England play Brazil on Tuesday 14 November. The Bobby Moore Fund is The FA’s official charity partner. For more information on how you can support Cancer Research UK’s life-saving bowel cancer research, visit www.bobbymoorefund.org