Hodgson stays humble, Kane hails 'special' England

AFP , Sunday 27 Mar 2016

Roy Hodgson insists England are still "a work in progress", but goal-scorer Harry Kane hailed a 'special night' after the Three Lions' stunning 3-2 fightback win away to Germany.

Toni Kroos and Mario Gomez had put the world champions 2-0 up at Berlin's Olympic Stadium on Saturday with an hour gone before the game turned England's way.

The Three Lions roared back with three unanswered goals from Kane and Jamie Vardy, then Eric Dier headed the winner on 91 minutes to stun the World Cup winners.

"It’s important to remain humble in these moments. Wehave an awful long way to go before we can claim to be like the Germans, after what they have achieved in the last few years," said England manager Hodgson.

"But it was a good performance and we can take a lot of pride and encouragement from it.

"It was good to see the players play their way back into the game. It showed character to come from 2-0 down.

"What pleased me most was quality in our passing and movement, we ended up scoring three goals from an awful lot of chances.

"I am pleased to have been able to pick up from where we left off in November having played well against France."

Nevertheless, Hodgson conceded this was his best night so far with England since taking charge in May 2012.

England's goal-scorer Kane was thrilled to have beaten the world champions in Berlin.

"It's a special night. When you're 2-0 down to the world champions, to then turn it around in their backyard shows character," said the Tottenham Hotspur striker.

"We dug in and got the goals. It will be a night many of us won't forget.

"You dream about scoring against teams like Germany on the big stage, but to have gone and won makes it all the more special.

"We have a great mentality about us, we never stopped playing and things were working.

"It was about staying focused, not just kicking long balls, and staying patient enough to wait for our chances."

Hodgson played down expectations on England, who host the Netherlands on Tuesday, before their opening Euro 2016 match against Russia, having also drawn Wales and Slovakia in Group B.

But he was pleased with the performances of inexperienced wingbacks Danny Rose, who was making his debut, and Nathaniel Clyne, who won his 10th cap.

"The result won’t do any harm, but it’s a friendly match and you have to be careful of attaching too much importance to it," he said.

"I'm pleased with the progress the young lads are making.

"It was a good step forward in terms of the work we are doing, but there is an awful lot we can still do better.

"We still have four more friendlies and two months of work before we play the first game which will count which is the group game against Russia in Marseille.

"Jamie (Vardy) and Harry Kane have had wonderful seasons with their clubs and are playing with confidence.

"But Clyne and Danny Rose are also playing with a degree of confidence.

"I've felt for a while that this is the start of something.

"Let's keep these players feet on the ground and more importantly, I want them to stay hungry to learn."

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