Harry Kane calls to check in on fellow England debutant goalscorer Colin Grainger, 86

Tuesday 12 May 2020
Current England captain Harry Kane called on former Three Lions player Colin Grainger in May

With almost 60 years between their respective goalscoring England debuts at Wembley, it’s fair to say Harry Kane and Colin Grainger have something in common.

Former Sheffield United, Sunderland and Leeds United player Grainger made his Three Lions bow back in May 1956 in a game against Brazil, when he opened the scoring with his first touch of the game after just four minutes before notching a second goal in a 4-2 win.

And current Three Lions captain Kane, who scored his first senior goal just 79 seconds after coming on as a sub against Lithuania in 2015, surprised Grainger with a video call this week to check in on the 86 year old at his home just outside Huddersfield.

The pair then went on to share tales of their own debut memories with Grainger admitting: "I was very lucky, but I do remember the goals.

 

"The first one was my first kick of the match after four minutes and then the second one was about ten minutes from the end, when I got a header in.

"It was brilliant, good memories. I played with Stanley Matthews, Tom Finney, Duncan Edwards, Jimmy Hagan of Sheffield United and Len Shackleton of Sunderland.

"They were great, great players and I'm proud that I played with those people.

"I've got some good memories, but my favourite memory is my two goals against Brazil, that's the one.”

And Kane concurred with that, adding: “When you make your England debut, it’s pretty special. I know that feeling and it doesn’t get much better than that.”

Kane celebrates his debut goal against Lithuania in March 2015

Like the rest of the nation, Grainger has been in isolation at home and unable to see his family in recent weeks, but he paid tribute to the care workers who have been with him every day, a notion which was seconded by Kane.

"I'm doing well because I’ve being looked after by the care workers really well,” said Grainger, who was also known as the ‘Singing Winger’ in his playing days due to a secondary professional career as a recording artist, which saw him perform on the same bill as the Beatles in 1963.

“Without them, I don't know how I would've done but we’re almost there now.

"But I'm missing the family coming most.”

Kane was calling Grainger as part of our Football's Staying Home series presented by Deliveroo.

By Nicholas Veevers