In pictures: Arsenal v Tottenham
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Daniel Levy fought fiercely and hard over the summer to keep Harry Kane out of the clutches of Manchester City. Six games into the season, many Tottenham fans are wondering why?
Kane has no Premier League goals and fewer shots even than Brighton centre-back Shane Duffy. His struggles were there for all to see in Sunday’s grim north London defeat to Arsenal at the Emirates.
Kane, though, is not the problem. He needs to be the solution. Express Sport looks at five key areas Nuno Espirito Santo somehow has to address to get his talisman firing again.
1 – Replace Christian Eriksen
For five seasons in a row, the Dane was in the top five for Premier League assists. Nobody in the current Tottenham team has the same cute eye for a pass to put Kane in.
As a result, he has stopped making the runs. Tanguy Ndombele might be able to bridge that gap but Tottenham paid £60million for a man whose services they don’t appear to trust.
2 – Attack down the flanks with their full-backs
With Danny Rose down one side and Kyle Walker or Kieran Trippier down the other, Kane knew if he darted to the near post or hung back beyond the far, he had the best two full-backs to find him with crosses.
Liverpool nicked the idea with Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andrew Robertson and won the Premier League title and the Champions League the year before.
Sergio Reguilon needs more of a license to roam and Emerson Royal needs to be told there is more to being a right-back than simply defending.
3 – Get Dele Alli sparking again
Nuno said “individuals” could not carry out his game-plan after taking off Dele Alli at half-time. The 25-year-old is a reasonable athlete and could perform an energetic pressing role as a first line of defence.
That is not his strength, though. The two-time PFA Young Player of the Year scored 18 goals in the Premier League from open play in 2016/17 – surpassing anything ever achieved even by Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard.
At a time when Spurs are desperate for goals, Alli needs to be given the same freedom to play off Kane that Mauricio Pochettino used to give him.
4 – Make Kane’s goals count
In two of Mauricio Pochettino’s five years, his Tottenham team had the fewest goals conceded in the Premier League.
Eric Dier has been hit and miss while Davinson Sanchez has never lived up to his obvious attributes.
Nuno needs to make them a pair that work so that Kane’s goals are winners and not just meaningless consolation goals.
5 – The nuclear option
Spurs need to get ready to sell Kane and use his fee to start again from scratch.
The current Tottenham side is going nowhere and if they cannot get their one world-class asset back-firing, they are just an overhyped team in a huge stadium and a far-too-comfortable training ground.
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