Kyle Walker relishing England’s friendly with old foes Scotland

By Sports Desk September 10, 2023

Kyle Walker is relishing England’s so-called friendly against Scotland after the long-serving right-back scored a goal he will remember for the rest of his life.

The 33-year-old made his senior debut in a friendly against Spain in November 2011 and has gone on to feature in four major tournament squads for his country.

But for all of Walker’s work it was not until Saturday evening in Poland that the Manchester City right-back was able to celebrate scoring an international goal on his 77th appearance.

The full-back raced behind and met a fantastic Harry Kane pass with a similarly impressive touch, before coolly cancelling out Ukraine captain Oleksandr Zinchenko’s opener in Wroclaw.

“Obviously to have 76 caps and not score a goal, it was playing on my mind a little bit,” Walker said after the 1-1 draw in Euro 2024 qualification.

“Just a lot of people were saying ‘you’ve played all these times’ and Harry Kane has been giving me a bit of banter, saying he’ll give me a penalty before I finish.

“But, listen, to get the goal, to help the team at the other end of the field was good.

“You know H likes to play them balls in behind and I just made the run.

“We do that at City where once the ball goes back, you make the in behind run.

“Harry’s made a great ball and picked me out. I think the touch has set it up because I’d probably have been looking to square it someone (otherwise).

“The touch felt good and it was a goal that I’ll remember definitely for the rest of my life.”

England were below par in Poland but it remains a case of when rather than if they wrap up qualification for next summer’s Euros.

Preparations for Germany continue with a first friendly game in 18 months on Tuesday evening, albeit the trip to old foes Scotland at Hampden Park is sure to have some bite to it.

Asked if there can ever be a friendly against Scotland, Walker told Sky Sports: “No, definitely not.

“I love playing in them games, especially just with everything behind it, with what they bring, their crowd and everything like that.

“Hopefully we can go there and have a good performance.

“They’ve had some good recent results so it’s going to be a tough game.

“The last time we went there we managed to scrape a draw in the last couple of minutes with Harry.

“So hopefully we can go there, put a good performance on, but it’s never going to be a friendly.”

Kane’s stoppage-time goal secured a 2-2 draw on England’s last trip to Scotland in 2017.

Walker was still a Tottenham team-mate of the striker at that point and it was widely reported this summer that the pair could have linked back up at Bayern Munich.

Kane moved to the Bundesliga but the 33-year-old has stayed with treble winners City, where his current deal expires at the end of the season.

“I have an obligation to fulfil my contract,” Walker said. “Obviously things haven’t gone for whatever way. Whichever way you want to look at it, it’s not happened.

“But I’m a Manchester City player. I want to stay at this club for as long as possible.

“But I need to do what’s right for me personally first and that’s stay at the top for as long as possible because there’s a lot of ex-players who’ve told me once you starting coming down it is difficult.

“So, if I can fulfil this season and many more hopefully at Manchester City that would be fantastic.”

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