Belfast Telegraph

England 4-0 Lithuania: Debut England goal tops season so far, says in-form Harry Kane

England 4-0 Lithuania

By Simon Peach

Harry Kane hailed the best moment yet of his wonderful season as he marked his England debut with a goal inside two minutes.

Kane replaced Wayne Rooney with England leading 3-0 against Lithuania and headed home with his second touch to round off a 4-0 win over Lithuania in European Championship qualifying group E.

Asked if he knew how long he had taken to open his account, Kane said: "A minute? Eighty seconds? It's not too bad!

"It's the start I dreamed of, it's a little bit of a blur at the minute.

"It's the best moment by far, to represent your country at senior level is the top. Hopefully I can keep doing it and it's the first of many."

Captain Rooney, who had scored England's opener, added: "It's fantastic, international football's different and to score after 80 seconds is incredible for Harry.

"We're all delighted and hopefully it's the first of many."

Rooney could have had more goals as he pursues Bobby Charlton's England record of 49, hitting the woodwork twice in the first half to remain two behind.

He said: "I was a bit disappointed with the first one that hit the post and the second I've had to go for the far corner and unfortunately it's hit the post.

"I'm happy we won the game, it's a big three points.

"Since the World Cup we've been fantastic, some great victories, we've been scoring goals and it's a really energetic team. A lot of teams around Europe will be looking at this team and taking notice."

Rooney was the man who took centre stage early on and he sensed Charlton's record was there for the taking.

Fabian Delph clipped the ball over the Lithuania defence and the skipper raced through in the fourth minute. The goalkeeper dived early, but Rooney went for the bottom corner and the ball struck the post. Three minutes later, all was forgiven as Rooney put England ahead.

Danny Welbeck strode into the box and fired at goal. The goalkeeper palmed the ball up in the air and Rooney pounced, nodding in.

Welbeck again beat his marker down the right in the 19th minute and lofted a cross to Rooney, whose header crashed off the bar.

In the final minute of the first half England doubled their lead. Welbeck stooped to meet Jordan Henderson's cross and the ball flew into the net off Tadas Kijanskas' leg.

England continued to dominate after the restart and Rooney provided the cross that led to England's third. He drifted right and whipped in a low ball which Raheem Sterling knocked in for his first England goal.

The crowd roared as Kane made his entrance and soon after he peeled away from his marker at the far post and nodded Sterling's cross in despite the goalkeeper's attempt to claw the ball away.

Kane could not find a second to make his debut even more memorable, but it did not matter one bit. Plenty of England players have had worse starts than this.

Belfast Telegraph