HARRY KANE last night roared: We’re not afraid to say we can win the World Cup.
The Three Lions fly to Qatar as one of the tournament favourites after reaching the semi-finals in 2018 and the Euro 2020 final.
But skipper Kane feels England can go one step further after claiming: “We have to believe we can win it.
“I look back at England 10 or 15 years ago and it was almost like we were scared to say we wanted to win it.
“One of the big shifts we have made over the last four or five years with Gareth [Southgate] is not being afraid to say ‘we are going to this tournament to win it’ because we believe we can.
“It’d be wrong to think otherwise. What’s the point of going to a World Cup and believing you can bring the trophy home?
“It is going to be tough and we are going to have to work extremely hard and have a bit of luck and have things go our way but it is important not to be afraid to say that is what we are going there to do.”
Kane will lead the Three Lions out for their first game against Iran on November 21 after a winless run of six games in the build up to the tournament.
But the Tottenham forward believes their poor run of form has eased pressure on Southgate’s squad.
He added: “It has not been a great period for England for a long time, probably since Gareth took charge we have not had a spell like we have had.
“In a way before a major tournament that can be a good thing because it allows you to not get carried away.
“If we won every game in the lead up to this tournament it would have been ‘we are guaranteed to win it’ and that comes with a different pressure.
“Being judged on major tournaments is the main thing and the last two we have had have been good and we have a great confidence in ourselves we can go and have a good tournament in Qatar.”
Spurs team-mate Eric Dier heads to his second World Cup despite thinking his England career was over.
Dier, 28, made six appearances for Southgate during the 2018 World Cup in Russia but was then omitted from the Euro 2020 squad.
The Tottenham defender thought he would never play international football again until he was recalled for two Nations Leagues ties against Italy and Germany in September.
Dier, who has 47 England caps, said: “I’m extremely proud to play at my second World Cup.
“There was a time when I thought I wasn’t going to be in anyway involved with England anymore. I have had to work very hard, fight a lot to get back in.
“I can’t wait. It is going to be an incredible experience. I’m really looking forward to being a part of it.”