A step-by-step guide to show Harry Kane has actually scored precisely zero proper goals for England

Dave Tickner
Gareth Southgate consoles Harry Kane after England's defeat to France.

Harry Kane is England men’s all-time leading goalscorer and this has p*ssed off a lot of people who know in their heart of hearts that he is in fact rubbish.

How to square this obvious rubbishness with that inconvenient all-time record, though? Surprisingly, it’s quite easy. We’ve donned our tinfoil thinking caps and with a little bit of effort – sometimes admittedly more than others – the underlying fraudulence of every single one of Kane’s England goals can be revealed.

Here’s the handy cut-out-and-keep guide to the truth the so-called MSM won’t tell you: that his actual goal total is zero.

Our journey to turn 63 goals into zero goals begins straightforwardly enough. Here we go.


The 21 Penalty goals
Definitely the easiest place to start, isn’t it? We’re not entirely sure when ‘excluding penalties’ became a halfway legit piece of flagrant statistical manipulation, but you certainly didn’t used to see it anywhere near as often in the days before a weirdly large number of people took it upon themselves to make proving Harry Kane’s fraudulence an integral part of their personalities.

It is a lot, though, isn’t it? It’s one third of his England goals. But some simple folk would say so what? Goals are goals.

Some would say it’s entirely disingenuous to just remove penalties because penalties are goals. They are worth precisely one goal, they have always been worth precisely one goal and will always be worth precisely one goal. They are easier to score than most goals, but also harder than some others so discounting them just seems utterly arbitrary and cannot be done in good faith. But to all that we say no. Penalties aren’t proper goals, there is no recent or historical evidence of scoring penalties being of any meaningful value and this is also why you would never catch properly great players like Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo padding their stats with any of these grubby little spot-kicks.

Strike them from the record, because what’s good about pretending penalties don’t count as goals is that it makes Kane’s record look instantly much sh*tter.

Take away his (and importantly only his, because reasons) precious penalties and he’s already only the fifth leading scorer for England, which obviously is rubbish.
New Harry Kane England goal tally: 42


The six Friendly goals
Bit of a problem, this one. Harry Kane has awkwardly scored only eight of his 63 fraudulent England goals in the most easily dismissed of games, the International Friendly. We don’t count goals in club friendlies on a player’s stats, do we? Why should international ones count? And two of his friendly goals were, of course, penalties, so we’ve already got rid of those.

Now we’re getting rid of goals here that include ones in barnstormers against Germany and France and another against Scotland which as we all know is never really a friendly is it, ho ho. But this isn’t about sanity or reason. We must be ruthless in our pursuit of proving that none of Harry Kane’s goals pass the purity test. These six remaining goals from friendlies are low-hanging fruit as long as we’re very careful indeed not to mention the 16 goals Wayne Rooney scored in friendlies or the 26 goals Gary Lineker scored in friendlies or the 35 goals Sir Bobby Charlton scored in friendlies. Ah, bugger.
New Harry Kane England goal tally: 36

The three San Marino goals
‘Competitive’ can of course be every bit as misleading a term for an international as ‘friendly’. All World Cup qualifiers are competitive games, even 10-0 wins over San Marino where Parry Pane scores four before half-time. Two of those were penalties, but he did also score in a 6-1 win over everyone’s favourite footballing minnows back in 2015, so that’s three more goals scrubbed off.
New Harry Kane England goal tally: 33

Harry Kane celebrates with Emile Smith Rowe


The six goals in other games where England scored 6+
Stands to reason these were also a waste, because no decent international team would ever concede six in a single game which is why such a thing has never happened.

So we can chalk off a goal against Bulgaria, whose obvious incompetence is further highlighted by the fact Kane got three assists before scoring himself. A first-half hat-trick in a 7-0 win over Montenegro also loses its international status here, while most helpfully we can remove the non-penalty bit of Kane’s hat-trick against Panama in the World Cup. In fairness, it was a genuinely silly goal anyway.

To that list we can now also add what some daft, biased people in the pay of Big Kane might have considered a somewhat important opening goal against a team that beat Germany in Germany and Italy in Italy during the last qualification cycle. Luckily, Kane himself foolishly played a part in creating goals for Marcus Rashford and Bukayo Saka before a very stat-paddy penalty indeed to round out a 7-0 win over an obviously incompetent North Macedonia just before being subbed off while poor Callum Wilson looked on ruefully from the touchline. Typical greedy guts Kane. At least we’d already got rid of the penalty in our earlier recalculations.

Again, at this point we must take great care not to mention the goals Wayne Rooney scored in 6-1 wins over Iceland, or the brace against Andorra, or the goals he himself plundered against San Marino, and Kazakhstan. Definitely don’t talk about Sir Bobby Charlton’s hat-trick in an 8-1 friendly win over the USA. Or the hat-trick in a 9-0 win over Luxembourg. Or the hat-trick in an 8-0 win over Mexico. Or the hat-trick in an 8-1 win over Switzerland. Studiously ignore the six goals Gary Lineker scored in 5-0 and 8-0 wins over Turkey, or the four he got in one game against Malaysia. Jimmy Greaves scored all his goals against Brazil and Germany, didn’t he? Okay, ‘statistics’ and ‘records’ suggest there was a hat-trick in a 9-3 win over Scotland or another treble of his own in that 9-0 Luxembourg game where some cynical fools might accuse Sir Bobby and Greavsie of a tiny bit of minor stat-padding. No. Very tricky customers, the Luxembourgers. There are no easy games in international football, except for ones where Harry Kane scores goals.
New Harry Kane England goal tally: 27


The one So-called Nations League So-called goal
Not a proper tournament, is it, the Nations League? It’s got no history, no pedigree. Nobody cares. It can’t be considered a proper international tournament alongside a Euros or a World Cup or a Tournoi or an Umbro Cup. The road from ‘glorified friendly’ to ‘just friendly’ is very short indeed and one we’re more than happy to walk. Only gets rid of one goal, because two of his three Nations League goals were pens against Germany. He really has scored a lot of penalties.

Still, we’re getting somewhere now, having successfully stripped Kane’s actual goals total right down to 24, the sort of measly total managed by now entirely forgotten strikers like Geoff Hurst.
New Harry Kane England goal tally: 26


The nine Euro Qualifiers Are A Formality These Days goals
There was a time when qualifying for the Euros was pretty much just as hard as qualifying for the World Cup, give or take a spot or two. Back when the Euros were a 16-team event it was a genuine achievement to make it. Now they let any old team make the finals, the qualifiers are just there to let scum like Kane pad their stats.

Very, very telling that Kane hasn’t scored a single England goal in qualification for a 16-team Euros, and the fact the last such qualifiers were played several years before his debut is just a convenient excuse. And also exactly the sort of massaging of facts and stats we’ve come to expect from his one-eyed supporters over the years. Those of us who can see that Kane is sh*t actually are the truth-seekers here, and thus it’s entirely correct of us to wipe out all those lazy pointless fraudulent goals scored in freebie qualification campaigns. It’s nine more scrubbed from his tally, even allowing for the fact that we’d already found different ways to get rid of quite a few others.
New Harry Kane England goal tally: 17

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The one Penalty Rebound goal
The only thing more fraudulent than scoring a penalty is missing a penalty, so it stands to reason that scoring from the rebound after you’ve missed a penalty absolutely shouldn’t count as a proper goal on your international record. Even if it’s the goal that sends your country to its first major final in 55 years. Especially if it’s the goal that sends your country to its first major final in 55 years.
New Harry Kane England goal tally: 16


The two England Didn’t Even Win goals
We all know that Harry Kane quite famously doesn’t win stuff, and that’s a key reason why his goals are invalid. Logically then, we shouldn’t count any of his goals in games England didn’t win. There are only eight of those, and six of them have already been taken care of by other methods above but we’re still getting rid of his opening goal in a 1-1 draw against Poland as well as a famous injury-time equaliser against Scotland, and it all takes us closer to our target.
New Harry Kane England goal tally: 14


The 13 Non-Elite Opposition goals
Okay, starting to get harder now and it’s taken longer than we hoped but we must push on through because the alternative is accepting that Harry Kane might not be sh*t and that won’t do. International football is supposed to be the best against the best and it’s important that we ignore the fact most international football isn’t that and never has been. All international scoring records are padded with goals against inferior opposition. But shush. We can get rid of loads here. Non-elite opposition can also mean whatever we want it to mean, from Malta to the Czech Republic via Slovenia. It’s basically anyone who hasn’t won a World Cup, right? Takes care of some otherwise awkward goals like the two against Tunisia in the 2018 World Cup and the one against Senegal in Qatar. And the Euro 2020 quarter-final goals against Ukraine, as well as some actual pish against your Albanias and Lithuanias.
New Harry Kane England goal tally: 1


The one Germany Are Also Rubbish Now, Actually goal
Having ruthlessly yet scrupulously fairly found entirely valid and impartial reasons why 62 of Harry Kane’s England goals don’t count we’re left with one. It wasn’t a penalty, it was at a major tournament, and it was against a team that has won lots of World Cups. But Germany are rubbish now, aren’t they? Anyone can and does beat them now, don’t they? That Lineker quote about the Germans always winning is as ridiculous now as his offensive BBC salary, isn’t it? Imagine thinking a goal against this Germany team was somehow valid. Just embarrassing, really.
New Harry Kane England goal tally: 0