Arsene Wenger has admitted that he was not sure who Harry Kane was when the striker was playing in the Arsenal academy.
The former Gunners boss said that the Tottenham striker was too young for him to cast his eye over at the time, playing with the side from nine years old to 11.
Speaking to Ian Wright via SportBible, the Frenchman conceded that the striker passed him by while he was boss in north London.
When asked if he knew who the 28-year-old was when he was in the side's youth setup, Wenger told SPORTBible: “No, not at all. He was nine years of age. I did not even know he played for us, and at 11 years of age, he moved to Tottenham, which was too early for me to know.”
With Spurs supporters chanting “he’s one of our own” about their captain, Arsenal fans often make the point that Kane was initially a supporter of their club.
But Kane slipped them by when he was a youngster, and in fairness, the gravitas of his ability wasn’t truly known until past his teen years.
The forward was shipped out on loan four times during his early professional years with Tottenham, including Millwall and Leyton Orient.
It wasn’t until his fifth season with the first team that he took the Premier League by storm, netting 21 times in 34 appearances.
For the Lilywhites, Kane has now 228 goals in 352 outings, and he is the club’s second-highest top-scorer, 38 goals behind Jimmy Greaves’ record of 266 goals in all competitions.
Would've Harry Kane had the same impact at Arsenal as he has at Spurs? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.
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Speaking about the famous photo of the player in an Arsenal top, Kane said to SpursTV: “I wanted to wear a Tottenham kit but I don’t think that would’ve gone down too well,” said Kane.
“I was eight years old. I was at Arsenal for a year and obviously, I was a kid, I just wanted to play football.
“I’ve been at Spurs since I was 11 years old, always loved the club.
“I’ve been here 10 years and hopefully many more years to come.”
Wenger admitted in 2015 he did not know whether to laugh or cry when he discovered Kane had been on Arsenal’s books as a youngster.
He said via the Guardian: “I didn’t know, I read it in the papers.
I found it quite funny, you know, and you are always a bit angry as well because I asked: ‘Why did he go?’ But at that age, boys can move here and there.”
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