Football

England's Harry Kane, pictured, says his partnership with Wayne Rooney and Jamie Vardy will take time after a slow start against Portugal.

Harry Kane: Don't judge Wayne Rooney and Jamie Vardy partnership on one game

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Harry Kane believes it is too early to judge his attacking partnership with Wayne Rooney and Jamie Vardy.

On paper the trio is a potentially thrilling prospect, combining the country's record goalscorer with a pair of strikers who netted 49 times between them last term.

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But Thursday's 1-0 win over Portugal was the first time they had played together for the Three Lions and it was far from satisfactory.

Rooney was slated to play as a number 10, behind Kane and Vardy, but time after time he pushed on through the middle as the latter pair drifted to the flanks.

There was a disjointed feel to England's forward play and, with the tournament opener against Russia just over a week away, precious little time to address it.

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"I don't think you can judge it on one performance," said Kane.

"It's one game, the understanding isn't just going to happen overnight.

"We were asked to play together against Portugal and we won the game.

"Of course we would have wanted a few more chances and few more shots at goal, but it's something we are still working on so there is no reason for anyone to get too downhearted.

"It's a learning curve. These games were to prepare us for the Euros and I feel they have done that.

"We'll see what formation the manager picks against Russia and we will just do our best."

The final comment suggested that England may yet revert to ditch the diamond shape and play with authentic wide men in France.

The presence of five specialist strikers in the squad and the culling of winger Andros Townsend suggests that is not Hodgson's instinct, but Kane says the players are working on several options behind the scenes.

"It's not just that formation, we have been doing a few," he said.

"It's important that you have that versatility going into a tournament so that if things aren't going right for you then you can change it. We have been doing two or three different formations and hopefully they pay off for us.

"We will start working towards the Russia game after a few days off and we will see what works best."

Kane broke his nose earlier this season and was forced to play in a protective mask, but avoided injury at Wembley when Bruno Alves kicked him in the head challenging for a high ball.

The Portuguese was dismissed for dangerous play but Kane escaped lightly from the incident.

"It wasn't a great challenge," he said.

"I am happy I'm still here. I was lucky not to have a few stitches. I think he just caught me with the top of his boot rather than his studs so I got away with one."

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