England and Tottenham captain Harry Kane is one of the most prolific striker’s in World Football.
224 goals in 343 games for Spurs and 41 goals in 64 games for England – making it likely he will break both the Premier League goal scoring record and become England’s all time top scorer.
So why is he struggling thus far in the 2021/22 season?
Struggling for fitness?
It was a whirlwind 2021 summer for Kane.
He captained England to the final of Euro 2020 and spent the summer eyeing a move away to Manchester City.
After this gruelling Summer, Kane would not return to Spurs training until August 9th and with the first round of Premier League fixtures taking place from August 13th-15th there was no way Kane would be ready in time.
Kane’s Premier League season debut would come in a short cameo appearance away at Wolves on August 22nd, with only two more appearances coming in the following weeks due to the International break.
With the hectic schedule that Kane faced, it is fair to assume he is only just finding his match fitness, this being supported by Kane notching up his first goals of this campaign – with a strike in the Carabao Cup vs Wolves.
What remains to be seen is whether or not Kane will return to Premier League action and return to the scoresheet. However, if he is now fully fit, you would expect him to do so.
Eyeing a move away?
One of the biggest storylines of the 2021 transfer market revolved around the wantaway Harry Kane.
Following the conclusion of the 2021/21 season, Kane all but said he was looking to leave Tottenham – placing a £100 million price tag on his head – expressing his desire to “win trophies”, something that Spurs haven’t done since 2008.
On July 23rd, there were rumours that both sides had agreed on a £160 million deal following the rejection of a £100 million pound bid, however this story was rejected.
The plot would thicken when Spurs reported that Harry Kane had failed to return to training on August 2nd, which led to an angry rebuttal from Kane on Instagram in the following days – despite what Kane perceived as a ‘broke promise’ from Levy regarding him being allowed to leave Spurs.
The storm would eventually settle and Kane would announce he would be “Staying at Tottenham this summer” – however, this doesn’t mean he hasn’t stopped eyeing a move away, which could be contributing to this dip in form.
Nuno’s style of play?
In the summer Nuno Espirito Santos joined Tottenham as the new Head Coach, and results have certainly been mixed.
In the Premier League, Spurs began the season with three consecutive 1-0 victories, over Manchester City, Wolves and Watford, before falling to two consecutive 3-0 losses, to a pair of London rivals in Crystal Palace and Chelsea.
Nuno has often been criticised for his defensive style of play – could this be contributing to Kane’s lack of goals?
Under previous long-time manager Mauricio Pochettino, Spurs played attractive Football and Kane thrived, almost constantly on the scoresheet when managed by Poch.
Under Nuno we have seen Spurs defend until they can find a breakthrough, if there even is one, before capitalising to score a goal, before returning to their defensive ways – smart against a team such as Manchester City, but bizarre against sides such as Wolves and Watford.
Adversly, under Jose Mourinho – another notoriously defensive manager – we didn’t see a dip in form for Kane. Kane continued his free-scoring ways despite the fact that Spurs failed to adapt, so there is evidence for Kane being able to maintain his high standards in a defensive set-up.
If Nuno’s style of play is the issue, then this may be the worst case scenario for Spurs – meaning Kane will have to adapt to the style of play, Nuno will have to adapt to suit Kane, or one may have to leave – hardly an ideal scenario for Tottenham either way.