Harry Kane's pivotal penalty miss in England's World Cup defeat against France is fuelling his desire to win trophies.

The Three Lions crashed out at the quarter-final stage in Qatar after Kane hammered an 84th-minute penalty over the crossbar with England 2-1 down against the eventual runners-up.

Kane has scored three Premier League goals in as many games since returning to club side Tottenham, as he looks to put his World Cup disappointment behind him.

The striker netted twice in a 4-0 thrashing of Crystal Palace on Wednesday, moving him to 264 goals for Spurs and within two of the club's all-time record goalscorer Jimmy Greaves.

Kane says his penalty miss still haunts him, but he hopes those bad memories can spur him on to success in the future.

"It was a tough moment for me," Kane told Standard Sport. "It's never an easy thing to go through, but it's part of football, part of the highs and lows of our sport.

"I had a bit of time away after, just to reflect, and it's made me even more hungry to come back and be successful.

"So nights like last night [Spurs' victory at Palace] are always good for me and the team, and it was much needed after the last couple of results as well."

Kane's first goal after the missed spot-kick came in his first game back as Spurs battled from 2-0 down to earn a point at Brentford on Boxing Day.

The striker believes getting straight back to playing has helped him, saying: "After it happened, I just wanted to play again as quick as possible and get it out of my head.

"It's something you have to deal with. I'll probably remember it for the rest of my life, but that's part of the game. It's not going to affect me as a player or as a person.

"I'll keep working hard to improve and it was nice to get our first win since coming back [at Palace]."

England's World Cup exit sparked speculation manager Gareth Southgate could walk away from the job after missing out on a third consecutive major tournament semi-final place.

However, Southgate subsequently decided to stay on until at least the 2024 European Championships, and Kane is delighted he has chosen to remain in charge.

"I'm really happy," Kane added. "I feel like there's some unfinished business there and he's a fantastic coach. We've been close now on a few occasions. 

"We looked strong in the tournament and it was small details that ended up not going our way. It will be nice to have another go at the Euros with the same team and staff."

Meanwhile, Kane already has one eye on the North London Derby against league leaders Arsenal on January 15, with no player scoring more often in that fixture than him (14 goals).

Kane is dreaming of surpassing Greaves' club-record tally against Spurs' rivals, explaining: "The derby would be a nice game [to break the record in], for sure.

"It's a really important game. Arsenal are top of the league and playing really well, so we'll be ready for that. We've got to try to pick up some results ourselves and get some good momentum."

Antonio Conte believes Tottenham "needed this type of performance" as they won for the first time in three matches by thumping Crystal Palace 4-0.

Spurs headed into Wednesday's match on the back of a 2-2 draw with Brentford and a 2-0 home defeat to Aston Villa, with questions over Conte's future surfacing after he seemed to publicly question the direction of the club.

But a Harry Kane double and goals from Matt Doherty and Son Heung-min gave Spurs an emphatic victory at Selhurst Park, putting them within two points of the Premier League's top four.

Conte was relieved after the match to end their winless run and pick up three valuable points, telling reporters: "There are moments when you need this type of performance.

"It was important. Three points, [we] don't concede a goal. It wasn't easy. To play against Crystal Palace away is not easy. They beat us last season 3-0 [at Selhurst Park]. [It is] a really difficult pitch to play.

"I have many things to be happy about, especially for the young players. We are facing a difficult situation with injured players, especially. To see that you can count on them makes me happy. Also it's important because we can create competition."

Kane's brace moved him to 264 goals for Spurs, within two of tying Jimmy Greaves as the club's all-time record goalscorer.

Conte pointed out the striker's leadership as one of his best attributes, saying: "We are talking about a really world-class striker and he's going to beat that record with the goals.

"For us he's an important point of reference. Especially in the moments you know Harry is there ready to fight and solve the situation with goals and assists.

"We have to continue in this way and face every situation, negative and positive, with great character.

"I hope that soon we can have the whole squad available and that will be very important to face Arsenal and Manchester City with all our players and then we can see our true level."

Bryan Gil impressed against Palace in what was just his third Premier League appearance this season, having come under fire for a below-par display against Villa.

Conte has high hopes for the 21-year-old, stating: "It was important. We are talking about a player born to play football. He understands football so quickly, he's so clever.

"This league is so difficult. Quality, you have to be fast and have endurance. He has that and also you have to be strong physically. Gil since last season has improved on that aspect."

Harry Kane moved within two goals of tying Jimmie Greaves' all-time record for Tottenham as his second-half doubled inspired them to a 4-0 win at Crystal Palace.

Spurs had resumed their Premier League campaign in disappointing fashion, coming from behind to draw 2-2 at Brentford before losing 2-0 at home to Aston Villa.

It looked like being another underwhelming game for Tottenham in a lacklustre first half, but Kane lifted them back to winning ways in style.

His brace on his 300th top-flight appearance took him to 264 goals for the club and within striking distance of Greaves (266) before Matt Doherty and Son Heung-min made it a rout as Tottenham moved two points adrift of the top four.

Spurs found themselves under pressure for much of the first half and were grateful to Hugo Lloris's smart stop denying Jordan Ayew after a neat one-two between Wilfried Zaha and Eberechi Eze.

Lloris was nearly caught out by a long-range effort from Joachim Andersen but it was the Palace goal that was breached 155 seconds after the restart.

England captain Kane could hardly have asked for a simpler finish, his task in nodding in at the far post made much easier by Ivan Perisic's superb right-wing cross.

Kane doubled his tally just under five minutes later when he collected a whipped low ball in by Bryan Gil and lashed beyond Vicente Guaita and into the bottom-left corner.

The points were made safe with a first goal of the season for Doherty, whose close-range shot had too much power for Guaita following good work from Kane and Son.

Son had the final say, winning a tussle with Marc Guehi to latch on to Kane's lofted ball and fire in his first league goal since his hat-trick against Leicester City in September.

David Beckham thanked Pele for his influence on football and Harry Kane labelled the Brazil great as a "true inspiration" after the Selecao legend's death.

Sao Paulo's Albert Einstein Israelite Hospital confirmed the three-time World Cup winner's passing on Thursday after suffering multiple organ failure.

The 82-year-old had battled health issues throughout the latter stages of his life, with his family travelling to join him before Christmas Day after he was moved into palliative care following cancer struggles.

Pele remains an icon of the game with many regarding him as the greatest footballer of all time and former England star Beckham paid tribute to the ex-Santos forward.

"It was HIS beautiful game, thank you and goodbye. Rest in peace my friend," Beckham wrote on Instagram.

England captain Kane was quick to offer his well wishes during the World Cup in Qatar when reports over Pele's health continued to circulate.

The Tottenham striker has repeatedly labelled Pele as a reference point for all attackers within the modern game and he echoed that sentiment on Twitter.

"Pele was a true inspiration and one of the greatest to ever play the game. Rest in peace," Kane wrote.

England's Football Association (The FA) also paid respects, posting: "Everyone who loves football, loves Pele. His unique talent lit up the game and inspired the world.

"Our thoughts are with his family, the Brazil Football Confederation and the Brazilian people."

As part of The FA's tributes, Wembley Stadium's iconic arch was lit up in Brazilian yellow and green in honour of the iconic star.

The Premier League is back, and in many ways, it felt like it never left.

A number of teams picked up where they left off for the World Cup in Monday's action, with leaders Arsenal securing a win against West Ham, though having to come from behind to do so.

Tottenham repeated their party trick of recovering from losing positions, though had to settle for a point at Brentford as Harry Kane kept up his superb Boxing Day record.

Liverpool came back with a hard-fought win at Aston Villa, with teenager Stefan Bajcetic scoring his first goal for the club, while Newcastle United blew away Leicester City in the first half at the King Power Stadium.

Stats Perform takes a closer look at some of the more interesting stats from the day.

Arsenal 3-1 West Ham: Gunners keep up record to fighting back against Hammers

Arsenal went in 1-0 down at Emirates Stadium at half-time after Said Benrahma's penalty, but came from behind thanks to goals from Bukayo Saka, Gabriel Martinelli and Eddie Nketiah. It made it the eighth time they have come from behind to beat West Ham in the Premier League, more than they have against any other opponent.

Hammers boss David Moyes has now lost 15 Premier League away games against Arsenal, equalling Harry Redknapp for the most away defeats against a specific opponent in the competition (15 vs Manchester United).

In the presence of Arsene Wenger for the first time since he left the club, the Gunners won their 10th consecutive Premier League home game, the first time they have managed that since April 2019, while this is the first time they have done so while scoring two or more goals each time since November 2017.

Saka seems to enjoy his Christmas, as he has scored in three consecutive Boxing Day games (also 2020 vs Chelsea and 2021 vs Norwich City), the first Arsenal player to do so since Thierry Henry between 2002 and 2004.

Today was the second time Arsenal playmaker Martin Odegaard has provided two assists in a single Premier League game, with the other coming on Boxing Day last season against Norwich.

Brentford 2-2 Tottenham: Kane puts penalty woe bee-hind him

Following on from his agonising penalty miss in England's World Cup quarter-final loss to France, Kane kept his composure to plant a header past David Raya as Spurs came from 2-0 down to earn a point on Monday.

Kane has now scored more Premier League goals on Boxing Day than any other player in the competition's history (10), finding the net in all seven of his appearances on December 26, while he has also scored against all 32 teams that he has faced in the Premier League – the best such 100 per cent record of any player.

One thing that will concern boss Antonio Conte is that Spurs have conceded the opening goal in each of their last six Premier League matches; their longest run of conceding first in the competition since April 2014 under Tim Sherwood (also six). They have also conceded two or more goals in six consecutive league games for the first time since May 2003.

Brentford are now winless in their last 14 meetings with Spurs in all competitions (D5 L9), since a 2-0 home win in the second tier in March 1948.

Ivan Toney scored the second for the Bees, making him the first English player to register 30 goal involvements (23 goals, 7 assists) in his first 50 Premier League appearances since Jamie Vardy in 2015 (also 30).

Leicester City 0-3 Newcastle United: Almiron continues to fly

It was a fast start by Eddie Howe's men, going 2-0 up against Leicester inside seven minutes – the earliest they had been 2-0 up in a Premier League game since January 2007 (seventh minute v Aston Villa). In fact, it was the earliest a Premier League team had been 2-0 up on Boxing Day since 2010 (Manchester City v Newcastle, after five mins).

Leicester conceded three goals in the first half of a home league game for the first time since September 2003 against Manchester United.

Miguel Almiron picked up where he left off with a superb strike, and has now scored nine goals in 16 games in the Premier League this season, as many as he had scored in his previous four campaigns in the competition combined (nine in 110 appearances).

Newcastle have won six in a row in the Premier League for the first time since 2012 under Alan Pardew. In fact, the Magpies have won 21 Premier League matches in 2022, their most in a single year since 1995, when they won 23.

Howe is only the third English manager to win more than 20 Premier League matches in a single year (21 in 2022 so far), after Kevin Keegan (24 in 1994 and 23 in 1995 with Newcastle) and Roy Evans (22 in 1996 with Liverpool).

Aston Villa 1-3 Liverpool: Robertson provides historic assist

It has not been the best campaign so far for Liverpool, but despite a World Cup being sandwiched in between, this made it three consecutive Premier League wins for the first time since winning their final three games of last season.

Mohamed Salah both scored and assisted in the win, taking his totals to 125 goals and 50 assists for the club in the Premier League. The Egyptian is only the second player with 50+ goals and 50+ assists for the club in the competition, along with Steven Gerrard (120 goals, 92 assists).

Andrew Robertson provided the ball for Salah's fifth-minute opener, his 54th Premier League assist, making him the all-time leading assister among defenders in Premier League history, one more than Leighton Baines (53), while 10 of his assists have come for Salah, with only Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane providing more for him (12 times each).

Bajcetic came off the bench to seal the win, scoring his first Premier League goal for Liverpool aged 18 years and 65 days, making him their third-youngest Premier League scorer, behind only Michael Owen (17y 143d) and Raheem Sterling (17y 317d). Bajcetic is also the second-youngest Spaniard to score in the competition, behind only Cesc Fabregas in 2004 (17y 113d).

Another youth prospect, Ben Doak, came off the bench for Liverpool to make his Premier League debut aged 17 years and 45 days, becoming the youngest ever Scottish player in the competition's history, overtaking Nigel Quashie in 1995 for Queens Park Rangers (17 years, 163 days).

Antonio Conte had "zero doubt" about Harry Kane's mentality to move on from his World Cup heartbreak after netting in Tottenham's draw with Brentford.

The England captain was playing for the first time since his crucial penalty miss in the Three Lions' quarter-final defeat by France in Qatar.

Kane was subjected to abuse by a section of the Brentford fans, who chanted "you let your country down" during the 2-2 draw.

Nevertheless, the striker responded with a header that inspired Tottenham to earn a point from two goals down, taking his Premier League goal tally for the season to 13.

Kane has now scored the most Premier League goals on Boxing Day (10), and Conte believes his number 10 has already moved on.

"About Harry, I have zero doubt about his mentality," Conte told BBC Sport.

"He's facing a strange situation. He had a really good World Cup and also the team played to the quarter-final, then he missed a decisive penalty.

"If you are strong mentally, you move on, and Harry did this. I think the fans were scared because he is playing for Tottenham, not for what happened with England."

Kane's team-mate Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg, who scored the Spurs equaliser, added: "To underestimate his strength is a big mistake.

"He is a machine. He has the quality to be number one in the world. The biggest mistake you can do in football is to doubt Harry Kane."

Harry Kane broke the Premier League's goalscoring record on Boxing Day with his strike during Tottenham's clash with Brentford.

The England captain netted his 10th goal on the day when he headed home Ivan Perisic's 65th-minute cross at Gtech Community Stadium.

Kane, who surpassed the previous record set by Robbie Fowler (nine), also maintained his record of scoring in all seven of his Premier League appearances on Boxing Day.

Antonio Conte's side fell 2-0 behind as Brentford took control with goals from Vitaly Janelt and Ivan Toney, but goals from Kane and Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg dragged the visitors level.

Kane's appearance for Spurs came 16 days after a crushing defeat in the World Cup in Qatar, where England lost to France in the quarter-finals and Kane missed a late penalty.

He showed no signs of that hindering his performances back at club level, however, with the strike against Brentford being his 12th in the Premier League this season.

Harry Kane and Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg scored in the space of six second-half minutes as Tottenham fought back from 2-0 down to claim a draw against Brentford in the first Premier League game following the World Cup on Monday.

Spurs, boasting a line-up including a host of players who featured at Qatar 2022, were dismal in the opening hour in west London and deservedly found themselves two goals behind courtesy of efforts from Vitaly Janelt and Ivan Toney.

Kane, playing for the first time since his vital penalty miss in England's quarter-final defeat to France, pulled one back for Antonio Conte's side with 25 minutes remaining.

And the visitors claimed a share of the spoils soon after when Hojbjerg coolly slotted home his fourth league goal of the season.

Brentford were rewarded for a bright start in the 15th minute when Janelt prodded in his second goal of the season from close range after Fraser Forster had kept out Mathias Jensen's deflected strike.

Spurs scarcely improved after that, with only the outstretched leg of Forster preventing Mathias Jorgensen putting the hosts 2-0 up 10 minutes before the interval, while Toney saw an effort ruled out for offside on the stroke of half-time. 

A Spurs improvement failed to materialise after the break, with Brentford doubling their advantage in the 54th minute when Toney poked home Christian Norgaard's knockdown from a corner.

Conte's men halved the deficit against the run of play after 65 minutes when Kane superbly headed home Clement Lenglet's cross from eight yards.

The away side sealed a point soon after when Hojbjerg sent a composed finish past David Raya from the middle of the penalty area following good work from Dejan Kulusevski.

Late Spurs pressure failed to yield a winner, although Kane came close when his header hit the crossbar. 

Harry Kane hoped to put his World Cup heartbreak behind him as he was named in Tottenham's starting line-up for Monday's trip to Brentford.

Kane missed a late penalty for England in their 2-1 quarter-final defeat to France in Qatar earlier this month.

With Tottenham and Brentford set to play the first Premier League game since the World Cup ended with Lionel Messi and Argentina beating Les Bleus in last week's final, it had been speculated that Spurs boss Antonio Conte would rest players who had featured in the latter stages of the tournament.

However, Kane was included in the team to face the Bees, along with other World Cup participants Son Heung-min, Ivan Perisic, Eric Dier and Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg.

Captain Hugo Lloris was named on the bench, with Fraser Forster getting the nod in goal, and World Cup winner Cristian Romero was left out altogether.

Brentford head coach Thomas Frank – fresh from signing a new deal until 2027 – named Ivan Toney in his starting line-up, despite the striker recently being charged with 262 alleged misconduct offences related to betting rules that took place over a four-year period.

The 26-year-old has until January 4 to respond.

Antonio Conte revealed Hugo Lloris will start Tottenham's Boxing Day fixture at Brentford on the bench after losing the World Cup final, while the Spurs coach backed Harry Kane to respond to his spot-kick woe.

Despite enjoying a strong campaign in Qatar, Lloris was unable to help Les Bleus to a successful defence of the trophy as they lost a dramatic final against Argentina after a penalty shoot-out.

The goalkeeper was one of three Tottenham players whose countries went the distance at the tournament, along with Argentina's Cristian Romero and Croatia's bronze medallist Ivan Perisic. 

While Perisic will be available to make an immediate return to Premier League action on Monday, Conte is aware of the need to hand the others a period of rest.

"About the players that played the final and third-fourth-place game, Perisic, Hugo and Cuti [Romero]... only Ivan, who came back today and had a training session with us, is available for the game against Brentford," Conte said on Friday.

"About Lloris, we want him to stay with us, and we also want him to stay on the bench against Brentford.

"As you know, it is important after the World Cup to give a bit of rest to these players. About Cuti, he will be available for the next game against Aston Villa [on January 1], I hope."

Lloris was not the only Tottenham player to see his World Cup campaign end with penalty heartache, with England striker Kane firing a spot-kick over the crossbar as the Three Lions were beaten by France in the last eight. Lloris was again the man in goal for France.

However, Conte has no concerns over how Kane will react to that disappointment, backing the striker to move on swiftly,

"We're talking about a world-class striker, and you know football is like this," Conte said. "When I was a player, I never missed a penalty because I didn't kick. Never! I was a real disaster at it. 

"But with a penalty I lost a World Cup final against Brazil [in 1994], and I think you live these moments, and you are really disappointed.

"For sure, for the first period you are sad, but then you know that you have to move on. Football gives you the opportunity to have other chances to enjoy.

"Football gives us the possibility to play the sport we have a lot of passion for. Honestly, I am not worried about him. I saw him very well in these two days with us."

Gareth Southgate should remain as England manager if he feels the players are behind him, according to former Three Lions boss Fabio Capello.

Southgate has admitted to being "conflicted" as he weighs up his future in the role following England's World Cup quarter-final exit to France on Saturday.

The former Middlesbrough boss, who led England to the 2018 World Cup semi-finals and Euro 2020 final, has been in charge since 2016 and is contracted until December 2024.

Capello, who managed England between 2007 and 2012, praised the job Southgate has done and believes he should remain in post as long as his players are content to follow his lead.  

"He's done a good job and created a really good team, a young team," the Italian told Sky Sports.

"He has to decide to stay or leave. This is his problem. If you are sure that the players follow, you have to stay. If you think the players are not with you, then you have to leave.

"This is my idea. Southgate can decide freely, though.

"To understand he [also] has to talk to the FA. Do you believe in me? Yes. Do you not believe in me? Then go. Bye bye."

Harry Kane's penalty cancelled out Aurelien Tchouameni's opener in the defeat to France, but a second spot-kick from the Three Lions captain sailed over the crossbar after Olivier Giroud had restored France's lead.

Capello has questioned whether Kane should have taken that second spot-kick due to France goalkeeper Hugo Lloris being his team-mate at Tottenham.

"Another really important thing, in my career I took penalties and I missed after 11 penalties because the opposing goalkeeper was one who played with me [in the same team] for two years before," he added.

"It's the same after Kane scored the first penalty; the second was a bit more difficult. This for me was a problem.

"I think they had to choose another player."

England captain Harry Kane will come back stronger from his penalty heartbreak against France, says Tottenham team-mate Hugo Lloris.

The Three Lions suffered a 2-1 loss in Saturday's keenly fought quarter-final tie, sending Gareth Southgate's side home from Qatar 2022 as Didier Deschamps' men remained on course for a title defence.

Having converted an earlier spot-kick to level both the match and Wayne Rooney's all-time England goal record, Kane subsequently skied another penalty over the crossbar late on, missing the chance to make it 2-2.

Lloris, who has played with Kane at Tottenham for a decade now, says he has briefly spoken with his club colleague, and believes he will pick himself up in impressive fashion when the dust has settled.

"I don't need to go too much further," he said. "We texted after the game. It was not easy to find the words straight after, in the changing room. I think he needed some rest.

"It's a difficult time for the English national team and for Harry, but I think he can be proud of what he's done for the team during this World Cup.

"In football history, many top players missed important penalties in their career – like Leo Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Kylian Mbappe.

"I've no doubt he will keep his chin up, and he will have Tottenham and the national team to shine [for]."

Kane won the Golden Boot at Russia 2018 four years ago after leading England to the semi-finals, and helped fire the Three Lions to the Euro 2020 final on home soil last year too.

He now has 53 goals in 80 caps for his country, leaving him one strike away from overhauling Rooney outright.

Harry Kane's penalty miss in England's World Cup defeat to France may have been influenced by the long VAR check, according to Jurgen Klinsmann, who feels there is "more to come" from the Three Lions.

England suffered an agonising quarter-final defeat to the reigning champions on Saturday, as Kane blazed an 84th-minute spot-kick over the crossbar after scoring an earlier penalty.

Referee Wilton Sampaio – who was criticised by some England players after the game – was initially unmoved by Theo Hernandez's push on Mason Mount, only awarding England's second penalty after a long VAR review.

Speaking in his role as part of FIFA's Technical Study Group on Monday, former Tottenham forward Klinsmann blamed that wait for Kane's costly error.

"From the time that he whistles for the penalty until the time he gets a chance to actually execute the penalty, there's far, far too much time passing by, and it works into your brain," Klinsmann said.

"I'm obviously a big Harry Kane fan and if Harry had the chance to just put the ball down and shoot, no big deal.

"But the whole VAR situation, double-checking whether it was a penalty… time goes by and by and by.

"Then you obviously start thinking and you get to a point where you don't execute the penalty the way you would have done it right after the whistle."

Kane's miss ensured England suffered a record seventh World Cup quarter-final exit, but Klinsmann believes they remain on the right path despite several near misses under Gareth Southgate.

"I think, overall, it was a very positive presentation from the English side in this entire tournament," the 1990 World Cup winner said.

"This game, France v England, came just too early. It should have been a semi-final or the final.

"But one team had to go home and unfortunately it was England, from an English perspective. But I think overall they played a very good tournament.

"It's still a team in growth. I think this team is still able to get better over the next few years. They are, age-wise, not on the limit now by any means.

"They have a lot of talent coming through, getting better, getting more experienced. They have now had three very positive tournaments with the one in Russia [in 2018], obviously the Euros where they went to the final.

"Now I think this was a very positive tournament, even if it ended in the quarter-finals. There's more to come from this England side, in my opinion."

England were not the only team to suffer penalty heartache in Qatar, with pre-tournament favourites Brazil bowing out at the same stage courtesy of a shoot-out defeat against Croatia.

Brazil planned for star forward Neymar to take their fifth and final penalty, which never arrived after Rodrygo and Marquinhos failed to convert, and Klinsmann believes that was a mistake.

Asked for his thoughts on where the Selecao went wrong, Klinsmann said: "Put your best shooter first. Set the tone with your best penalty-taker."

Hugo Lloris believes Tottenham team-mate Harry Kane "must have been feeling the pressure" after the striker's missed penalty helped France into the World Cup semi-finals.

Kane had already scored a penalty to equalise for England after Aurelien Tchouameni's long-range opener, but Olivier Giroud put France back ahead with just 12 minutes to play.

Kane then received a golden chance to level again from the spot after Theo Hernandez inexplicably bundled over Mason Mount in the France area.

However, the England captain blazed his penalty well over before France saw out the remaining minutes to keep alive their hopes of becoming the first team since Brazil in 1962 to retain their World Cup crown.

Lloris feels his club team-mate felt the weight of the moment, causing him to balloon his spot-kick over the crossbar.

"The first one, we know each other so well that I said to myself he'll change, but he stayed with his usual," Lloris told France's Twitter account. "The second one, I went the right way.

"Certainly, he must have been feeling the pressure so he lifted it a bit, he forced it a bit. It was an important moment in the game."

France won Saturday's game despite England having double the amount of shots as the reigning world champions, while registering 2.41 xG (expected goals) to France's 1.01.

Laurent Blanc, who coached Les Bleus between 2010 and 2012 having won 97 caps as a player, cited France's superior experience deep into tournaments as the reason for the quarter-final victory.

"You always have to respect your opponent," Blanc told reporters. "I found a very good French team, but I honestly found a very good English team. It's been a while since I've seen an England team so good.

"We won, I think, because we have perhaps a little more experience and then the fate was more favorable to the French than to the English."

France's path to their second straight World Cup final is now only blocked by Morocco, whose fairytale run to the final four has seen them become the first African nation to get this far in the tournament's history.

Blanc says Morocco must be treated as a very capable opponent and suggested complacency cannot creep in.

"I think it will be a great game, you know the history of the two countries, they are very close," Blanc explained.

"We must respect the opponents who are surprises and Morocco, I think, in the semi-finals of the World Cup, is a surprise.

"But when you get to the semi-final of the World Cup, yes you were considered a surprise at the beginning but when you get there, you can no longer be a surprise. So it means that they have very good players, a very good coach.

"So here we are, may the best team win and we will watch it with great interest."

David Beckham called Harry Kane a "true leader" after the striker missed a crucial penalty in England's 2-1 defeat to France in the World Cup quarter-finals on Saturday.

Kane had already converted from the spot to equalise for the Three Lions after Aurelien Tchouameni's long-range opener, but Olivier Giroud headed France back in front with 12 minutes to play.

However, England found a golden chance to level for a second time when Mason Mount was bundled over in the France box by Theo Hernandez.

Kane stepped up once again, but blasted his second spot-kick well over the crossbar as France held on to knock Gareth Southgate's side out of the tournament.

Beckham is no stranger to World Cup heartbreak, having been sent off in England's 1998 round-of-16 penalties defeat to Argentina for a petulant kick on Diego Simeone.

Beckham received much abuse for the incident, and he wants England fans to remain behind Kane in a way that was not the case for him in 1998.

In an Instagram post, Beckham said: "It takes a true leader to step up in these moments and that's what our captain [Kane] did.

"Our boys will continue to grow. It's always the worst feeling waking up after being knocked out of a tournament but our players, Gareth [Southgate] the staff and all our fans can be proud of this team.

"The next time it will be a different ending. We walk away with our heads held high."

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