England half-time player ratings as Kane penalty levels score against Netherlands

  • England vs Netherlands is finely balanced after 45 minutes
  • Harry Kane scores controversial penalty after Xavi Simons put Dutch ahead
  • Phil Foden putting in his best performance of the summer so far
Harry Kane equalised from the penalty spot
Harry Kane equalised from the penalty spot / Marvin Ibo Guengoer - GES Sportfoto/GettyImages

England have been handed a first half lifeline in their Euro 2024 semi-final against the Netherlands after being awarded a soft penalty courtesy of VAR.

A speculative effort from Xavi Simons put the Dutch into an early lead when the play-maker won possession from Declan Rice high up the pitch and drove towards goal.

But Harry Kane was gifted the chance to equalise from 12 yards only a few minutes later when he made contact with the boot of Denzel Dumfries when taking a shot in the box. A VAR review advised referee Felix Zwayer take another look and he bizarrely pointed to the spot.

England's tails were up after that and it was the best half of football that Gareth Soutgate's side have played at the tournament by some distance. By the time the interval came, they could have been ahead, with Phil Foden leading the charge - the FWA Footballer of the Year had once close-range effort stopped on the goal-line, while another struck the post from distance.

But Dumfries also hit the bar for Netherlands at a corner, highlighting there is still a threat.

England half-time player ratings vs Netherlands

Phil Foden, Bart Verbruggen
Phil Foden is finally looking like his usual Man City self / Marvin Ibo Guengoer - GES Sportfoto/GettyImages

GK: Jordan Pickford - 4/10 - The shot from Simons, although powerfully struck, was within reach.

CB: Kyle Walker - 7/10 - Ought to have done more to close Simons down in that moment to prevent the shot from being taken in the first place. Played an important role on the ball keeping England high.

CB: John Stones - 6/10 - Protected from any kind of direct centre forward threat.

CB: Marc Guehi - 6/10 - Understandably not as adventurous as Walker on the other side of the back three but pretty much flawless with his passing.

RM: Bukayo Saka - 6/10 - Not as involved as others like Bellingham or Foden but it his jinking run inside and blocked shot that resulted in Kane winning the penalty.

CM: Declan Rice - 4/10 - Weak in his duel with Simons when he lost the ball that directly led to England falling behind in the opening stages.

CM: Kobbie Mainoo - 8/10 - Seemed to really thrive linking up with two number 10s finding space in pockets ahead of him.

LM: Kieran Trippier - 7/10 - Deliberately occupied a really high position that seemed to stifle the attacking threat of Dumfries.

AM: Phil Foden - 9/10 - Easily his best 45 minutes of the summer. Had one effort stopped on the line after dancing through the Dutch defence and later hit the post too.

AM: Jude Bellingham - 8/10 - When he started to get a foothold in the game at 1-0 down, England suddenly looked a different beast.

ST: Harry Kane - 7/10 - Didn't deserve a penalty when he made contact with Dumfries, rather than the other way round, but he converted it with such confidence.