Harry Kane was fully in match mode when he discovered he had been awarded an MBE.
The 25-year-old received messages from his fiancee Kate urging him to get in touch just prior to Tottenham’s Premier League game against Southampton on December 5.
The Spurs and England striker receives the accolade at the end of an incredible year for club and country in which he won the World Cup Golden Boot with six goals in the team’s run to the semi-finals.
Kane, whose goal against Bournemouth on Boxing Day took him to 156 in all competitions for Spurs, told Spurs TV: “We got a letter to the house, Kate opened the letter… it was before the Southampton game.
“Normally we’d talk a little but she would never call me just before the match. I had a missed call and she texted me ‘could you answer?’.
“I thought something was wrong! But Kate was excited and told me that we’d had a letter from the Queen saying we’d get an MBE.
“I’m proud for her as well and the whole family. It’s not just for me. We’re part of a journey together. It shows that the hard work has paid off.”
The recognition in the New Year Honours is another notable accolade in Kane’s career, but he admits the most special moment of all would be to win a trophy with Spurs.
“It’s hard to pick one, there have been so many proud moments,” he said.
“On the pitch, it’s been a whirlwind and hard to process it all. Hopefully we can carry on and win something this season – that would be the most special moment, for sure.”
Kane, who captained England at the World Cup in the summer, paid tribute to all those who had helped him in being awarded an MBE.
“It’s quite surreal, really,” said Harry. “It’s been a great year for club and country. It’s hard to put into words really.
“I’m very passionate about our country, very patriotic and going back to England, it shows how good the summer was for the whole nation, not just from my point of view, but what it did bringing everyone together.
“I’m extremely proud to be a part of that and obviously thankful to all my team-mates, all my coaches at Tottenham, England, (Spurs boss) Mauricio (Pochettino), Gareth, all the staff, the guys as well – without them I wouldn’t be scoring the goals and getting these accolades.”