The Premier League is well underway and this season promises to be the best ever in the history with as many as 6 teams fighting for honours.
Last campaign witnessed Chelsea running away as Champions with the title race not being as close as the previous editions but also brought out eye-catching talent to the fore.
One of these players was Harry Kane. Tottenham had not much hope last season after starting the season with no recognised strikers. Spanish flop, Soldado was the only out-and-out striker they had in the squad apart from the long-term absentee Emmanuel Adebayor.
A number 10 of Christian Eriksen’s calibre coupled with promising wide players were only short of a world class striker to propel Tottenham to glory. But soon the transfer window closed down and there were visible signs of panic among the Tottenham faithful.
What happened next blew away all pundits and experts of the game as Mauricio Pochettino had succesfully developed a lethal striker who was ‘one of their own’. Harry Kane took the continent by storm scoring 31 goals in all competitions leading Tottenham to a Europa League place.
Fast forwarding to the current campaign and the scenes over at the White Hart Lane are yet again agonizing as the man who was tipped to rescue the Lily-whites out of their misery once and for all, was shooting blanks game after game.
It’s been 5 games so far in the Premier League and the 22-year-old has found goals hard to come by. As a striker, the most important facet of your game is goals, but what people fail to see is the work-rate off the ball. The statistics provide a much better explanation.
Kane has averaged 3.4 shots per game which is a similar tally to last season. But he has also completed 2.2 dribbles per game which is considerably higher to what he did last season. On the pitch, we observe that Kane receives the ball in much deeper areas and links up better with the midfielders this season.
This only proves that Mauricio Pochettino is developing Kane as a complete striker who knows how to exploit small pockets of space not only for himself but for his team-mates alike. The Manager has handed him a starring role in the squad, from being a natural goal-poacher to a complete player capable of leading the line week-in, week-out.
Still, the only thing that eludes him is his finishing which will eventually come. The change in his playing style was clearly visible last week when the Englishman scored against San Marino. On national duty, he played his natural game and scored whereas for Tottenham, he has to work more to create more chances for his team, something he’s new at.
On the face of it, Harry Kane has been poor with his performances this season as claimed by many people. But on examining closely, one would find it hard to argue that his development is ongoing and the final product of this transformation will be something that would take world football by storm many-fold.
Stat credits – whoscored.com
Picture credits – Telegraph