Tottenham striker Harry Kane has regularly been linked with a transfer away from N17 – but this time things feel a little different.
Manchester United are, again, the main side being credited with a strong interest in the Spurs goal machine and it’s no surprise either.
But recent comments from the player himself now suggest a deal could be done as his ruthless pursuit of excellence continues.
A switch to England’s biggest football club would certainly make sense; despite Man United’s recent decline they are now one of the teams best equipped to handle the impact the coronavirus pandemic has had on the sport.
Spurs, with stadium debts to pay totalling around £637million, may at some point need to balance the books as the economic impact unravels.
In this case, Kane would be one of their most saleable assets, and it was previously reported they might even listen to a £200m offer this summer.
It’s a claim that has been rebuffed but it doesn’t alter the fact the 26-year-old has been more vocal than ever about his future.
So what’s the latest news and why are Man United so keen on the England captain? talkSPORT.com take a look.
Harry Kane – the key information
- Full name: Harry Edward Kane MBE
- Date of birth: July 28, 1993 (age 26)
- Place of birth: Walthamstow, England
- Current team: Tottenham (278 apps / 181 goals)
- International team: England (45 apps / 32 goals)
- Honours: PFA Team of the Year x4, PFA Young Player of the Year, Premier League Golden Boot x2, FIFA World Cup 2018 Golden Boot, FIFA World Cup 2018 Dream Team
What’s the gossip?
Pretty much every summer Manchester United have been linked with a move for Kane and this summer won’t be any different.
The Red Devils are keen on placing the final pieces in Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s puzzle and having landed Bruno Fernandes in January they’re on the verge of something special.
Even the addition of Odion Ighalo has shown an out-and-out centre-forward would really take them up a notch and into a top four side, with the possibility of a title challenge.
Kane, therefore, fits the bill more than ever. He’ll have a team focused around getting the ball into the penalty area at pace and can help him press high up the pitch.
The latest reports were the suggestions a £200m deal might be sanctioned by Tottenham this summer, although some outlets believe this will not happen.
Kane did, though, say he could be open to a switch. Speaking with Jamie Redknapp, he explained: “It’s one of those things, I couldn’t say yes, I couldn’t say no [about staying at Tottenham for his whole career].
“I love Spurs, I’ll always love Spurs. But it’s one of those things.
“I’ve always said if I don’t feel we’re progressing as a team or going in the right direction, then I’m not someone to just stay there for the sake of it.
“I’m an ambitious player, I want to improve, I want to get better, I want to become one of the top, top players.
“It all depends on what happens as a team and how we progress as a team. So it’s not a definite I’m going to stay there forever – but it’s not a no either.”
Harry Kane's Premier League goal record
2013/14 – 19 appearances and four goals
2014/15 – 51 appearances and 31 goals
2015/16 – 50 appearances and 28 goals
2016/17 – 38 appearances and 35 goals
2017/18 – 48 appearances and 41 goals
2018/19 – 40 appearances and 24 goals
2019/20 – 25 appearances and 17 goals
Just what kind of player is he?
For reasons unknown, Kane does his have his fair share of haters. We’re not sure why given the ludicrous talent he has and the success he has achieved since breaking into the first team in N17.
His goal record speaks for itself and it would be far too easy just to label him as a plain and simple centre-forward. Strong, good at holding the ball up, and prolific in front of goal, he fits the label but he’s so much more.
To understand the player Kane truly is, it’s important to know he did spend time as a midfielder in his youth; this has helped his all-round game and it’s extremely evident when you watch him closely.
Not only is the striker an excellent technician in front of goal and inside the penalty area, he’s capable of scoring almost every type of goal imaginable.
Headers, tap-ins, long range rockets with both left and right feet, finessed strikes into the top corner, and blasted efforts, and against Leicester this season he even managed to score while falling over.
But this isn’t the only thing Kane does; he presses well, and has a fine passing range for a forward, capable of neat and quick interchanges, but also possessing the ability to spray the ball out wide with precision or assist team-mates with the most delicate of threaded through-balls.
He’s the perfect centre-forward and don’t just take our word for it…
What the experts are saying
Manchester United legend Gary Neville is someone who is extremely keen on Kane heading to Old Trafford.
“Any club in the Premier League would want Harry Kane,” he told Sky Sports The Football Show. “There are some signings that are like gold, where you just know they are going to work. Harry Kane is unbreakable in the sense of his mentality. He’ll always score goals, will always give 100 per cent in training, and is completely reliable as a manager would want.
“For Manchester United, it would be a perfect signing in terms of what they need. They had Bruno Fernandes come in and he’s done a great job, Harry Maguire at the back. If they can get someone like Kane up front, you’re looking at a fantastic spine.”
Another Manchester United legend, Rio Ferdinand, is also enamoured with Kane
“He’s somebody who prides himself on goals. He’ll know every detail.
‘This guy, he’s always scored goals. What’s great about him is he scores every type of goal.
“He scored a header and in the six yard box today [against Olympiakos], he can score from 30 yards and he brings other people into the game as well. He’s an all round great No. 9.”
And even Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp can’t help but be impressed by his rise to the top
“Harry Kane, what a striker,” he said prior to previous encounter. “He is just a fantastic player but I hope we don’t see why I like him!
“I respect how he came up, going out on loan, his career is fantastic. I remember one picture where him and Jamie Vardy are sat together on the bench for Leicester. I wouldn’t want to be the coach at that moment!
“Harry did it the hard way. It’s not like he came up at 18 years old as a talent. He had to do it the hard way and he had to improve day-by-day.”
Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane is another who has hailed Kane’s exceptional progress
“He’s good at everything and he’s always thinking about the goal in everything he does,” the legendary Frenchman said.
“I don’t know what will happen in the future. But in the present, what he is doing has made him a very important player, a key player.
“He is a complete player. He did not seem to be one [at first], but in the end, he is.”
Having once called Spurs the ‘Harry Kane team’ we all know how much Man City boss Pep Guardiola rates him
“He is the No 9 for the international team, he is an incredible striker and he has everything, right, left, movements, he keeps the ball and sets up the ball.
“He is intelligent and when he is in the box he does everything. He is a modern striker.”
Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard has even previously admitted he wishes Kane played for Liverpool
“I love the player, I love the character. I watch his interviews a lot and I’ve also met him on a couple of occasions, I think he’s a perfect role model and ambassador for the game.
“I love the way he goes about his work. I’ve also spoken to people who know him better than myself and I’ve heard he’s obsessed and relentless on the training ground. I’m sure he’s getting rewards now for all that hard work. I’m glad he’s English, I wish he was a red. Buy yeah, [I’m] really happy for him, the form he’s in and [I’m] really enjoying watching him at the moment.”
England manager Gareth Southgate is, obviously, a fan, and he highlights the striker’s many qualities
“He’s an incredible goalscorer, that’s the obvious part of his game, but he’s a No. 9 that can play and link as an outstanding number 10 as well.
“So, not only does he lead the line for us, providing the goal threat, he also provides opportunities for others and I’ve said before, what an unselfish player he is. But of course when those opportunities are there he’s absolutely ruthless.”
He’s a goalkeeper’s nightmare and Gianluigi Buffon was certainly full of praise for him
“There are many similarities between Kane and Batistuta,” he said.
“I think the comparison is very appropriate in terms of physical strength, athleticism and finishing.
“Kane has been in outstanding form. There is no doubt at the moment he is among the top two or three best strikers in the world.”
And it might have been back in 2017 but Brazil legend Ronaldinho is an admirer too
“Harry Kane has been a great player for a while now – but there is no doubt this season he has hit a new level,” the Brazilian said.
“He is now at the level where any team in the world would want him. He could walk into any team in Europe. Barcelona, Real Madrid, Manchester City, it doesn’t matter how strong the team.
“He is now one of those few players in the world that any team would have to make room for if they had the chance to sign him.”
How would he fit in at Manchester United?
Fairly obviously, Kane will become the focal point of the Red Devils’ attack.
His presence, and ability to play in the style of No.10, will dovetail excellently with Anthony Martial and Marcus Rashford, who could move on ahead of him and receive his excellent passes, or make space for his fine long range shooting.
Behind him will be Bruno Fernandes and Paul Pogba giving him the creative midfielders he’s lacked in recent times with Christian Eriksen and Dele Alli both off form over the last year.
It’s an attacking XI but the United defence has been superb this term, not often getting the credit it deserves, and they should be able to cope as long as Kane and Co are getting the goals.