Toby Alderweireld hopes Belgium’s defenders will have an advantage over England striker Harry Kane when the nations meet on Thursday.

Belgium and England both won their opening Group G games against Tunisia and Panama, qualifying for the Round of 16 of the World Cup in the process.

Kane has scored five goals across two appearances so far, including a hat-trick in England’s 6-1 win over Panama.

Alderweireld, who has started on the right of a back three in both Belgium games, says being familiar with how Kane plays won’t stop the striker posing a significant threat on Thursday.

“Hopefully it’s an advantage for the defenders,” Alderweireld told the Evening Standard.

“I know his strength, of course. But his strength is that he’s good at everything. He’s quick, he’s strong, left foot, right foot, headers.

“It’s so difficult to stop him. That’s what I know. As a team, we have to be tough [in order] to beat him.

“He just breathes football. He wants to improve, improve, improve. He’s not only a goal-scorer. He works so hard for the team. He’s available to help the plays. He’s the all-round striker.”

Kane has now scored 18 goals in 26 appearances for the Three Lions.

He went into the World Cup on the back of his best ever goalscoring season for Spurs, finding the net 41 times in 48 appearances across all competitions.

Alderweireld has been heavily linked with a move to Manchester United this summer after failing to agree terms on a new contact with Tottenham earlier this year.

The 29-year-old is expected to resolve his future after the World Cup.



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