England captain Harry Kane said the team’s defeat in the European Championship final and speculation over his Tottenham Hotspur future in the summer took a toll on him mentally.
England lost to Italy on penalties in the final in July, while Kane was linked with a move to Premier League champions Manchester City during the summer transfer window.
“You go through the highs and lows of a major tournament, coming so close to a dream and it being taken away from you in such a quick moment,” Kane told British media on Thursday.
“And then it was my first summer of transfer speculation, having to deal with those situations. So, of course, it takes a toll mentally but from my point of view, I’ve always had good friends and good family around me.
“Being able to talk to them in those situations, being able to talk to people you trust. When things are difficult, it’s important that you do talk about it and not just hide it in and suck it up.”
England are top of Group I in World Cup qualifying matches, three points ahead of Poland. They host Albania later on Friday and play at San Marino on November 15