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Gary Lineker and Alan Shearer defend England criticism after Harry Kane response

Gary Lineker and Alan Shearer defend England criticism after Harry Kane response

Gary Lineker and Alan Shearer have defended their criticism of England's performance in the 1-1 draw with Denmark at Euro 2024.

The BBC pundits issued a damning verdict on the performance of Gareth Southgate's team in last week's match - which led to Harry Kane responding by telling them to "remember what it's like" to represent the Three Lions at a tournament - and have put the furore down to "journalists stirring the pot".

Speaking on The Rest Is Football podcast, Lineker said: "We've been critical of England's performances, as has pretty much every journalist, but you know how it happens.

"We've talked about this a few times before, about journalists not being brave enough to ask their own questions.

"I guarantee whoever that was was probably critical themselves. They do it a) to stir the pot and b) because they're too scared to ask a question from their own selves."

The former England striker continued: "It puts Harry on the spot. I thought he answered it fine.

"There was one bit there where he says that we have responsibilities as ex-England players, that we should know better and that we never won anything or words to that effect.

"Fine, he's absolutely right. But I will say one thing. The last thing in the world we want to be is downbeat and critical. We want the England team to perform well on the pitch. The best punditry of all is when England play well."

Shearer added the performance against Denmark needed to be called out because it was so bad and urged the players to respond by improving on the pitch.

He said: "It's important we never get personal. That's the most important thing.

"They were terrible and we have to say that. If England were brilliant we'd say they were brilliant, that's the way it is.

"As a player you always get the right of reply on the pitch. I have no problem what we said, I wouldn't take anything back we said.

"England were really poor. I think the vast majority of the country, and even the boys in the squad, will know they were awful against Denmark. There were hardly any positives."

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