Scotland 2-2 England: Late Kane equaliser salvages point
In a scrappy encounter in Glasgow, substitute Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain had put Southgate’s side ahead with 20 minutes remaining, before Leigh Griffiths intervened with his first two goals for the hosts – both brilliant set-piece strikes in the final few minutes.
But in the 93rd minute – of four added on – Kane side-footed home Jake Livermore’s deep cross past Craig Gordon to earn England a share of the spoils.
- Harry Kane has scored his first goal for England since May 2016, after a run of 575 minutes without one
The game was characterised more for its aggression than artistry, with a frenetic crowd providing the soundtrack to a scrappy game that produced very few moments of excitement before the final exchanges.
Pantomime booing of England’s national anthem was followed by an impeccably observed silence for last weekend’s London Bridge attacks – and then the theatrics began.
Scotland’s Scott Brown was booked inside three minutes for a late challenge on Dele Alli, followed up with a Livermore cruncher that typified the stunted early exchanges.
The first proper chance came on 17 minutes when Kane – skippering England for the first time – beat the offside trap with lovely control inside Kieran Tierney, but blasted a left-footed half volley over the bar.
Kane was in again five minutes later with the best chance of the first half, but missed Adam Lallana’s cross completely, albeit a ball that was slightly behind him.
Scotland goalkeeper Craig Gordon was almost embarrassed by the striker soon after, coming out to head a weak clearance that only reached the striker, who lofted a shot towards goal that Tierney headed off the line.
England calmed as the half wore on, and five minutes before the break, Adam Lallana hit the side-netting after a fine dummy that beat Christophe Berra.
- Leigh Griffiths' first goal for Scotland is also the first goal England have conceded in this World Cup qualifying campaign
Gareth Southgate’s side were hardly imposing their quality on the Scots, but still looked most likely to break the deadlock as the second half began. Five minutes in, Livermore struck a post after seeing his shot deflected, and the resulting melee was eventually cleared for a corner.
Southgate’s side upped their level: Kane forced a smart save from Gordon with a snap header from Ryan Bertrand’s cross… and then came the opener.
In the 70th minute, substitute Oxlade-Chamberlain worked his way into the box and fashioned some space, forcing two Scotland defenders to collide, before aiming a strike straight at Gordon which the Celtic goalkeeper feebly aimed a fist at as it clipped beyond him into the net.
At this point, the three points looked relatively safe for England; Scotland had barely threatened, and Southgate’s side would have been confident they could see the game out.
It wasn’t to be. In the 87th minute, Griffiths lined up a free-kick and brilliantly dispatched a strike past Joe Hart – his first goal in 14 attempts.
Incredibly, within two minutes it was Gordon Strachan’s side who were ahead as Griffiths curled another lovely free-kick beyond the England wall.
Yet somehow that wasn’t it. Deep into injury time, Livermore lofted a ball over the top of Scotland’s defence for captain Kane to finish off and keep England three points clear of Slovenia atop Group F.