Monday, July 22, 2019

One shot, 11 passes, 26 touches – Tottenham´s Kane gamble backfires

SoccerNews in English Premier League 1 Jun 2019

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Much of the build-up to the Champions League final from a Tottenham standpoint focused on the fitness of star striker Harry Kane.

The England captain had not featured since the quarter-final first-leg win over Manchester City at the start of April and he faced a race against time to be fit to face Liverpool in Madrid on Saturday.

Debate raged over whether Kane should be named in Mauricio Pochettino’s XI after fellow forward Lucas Moura hit a hat-trick in the semi-final second leg against Ajax.

But Kane was selected from the start, with Lucas left on the bench, and he failed to fire as Spurs were beaten 2-0 at the Wanda Metropolitano.

Pochettino might have considered it a risk worth taking in the biggest match in Tottenham’s history, but the gamble backfired.

The numbers told the story as Kane – usually known for his shoot-on-sight policy – mustered just one shot in the entire 90 minutes. Lucas managed two in a 24-minute cameo.

Meanwhile, Kane contributed just 11 passes and 26 touches as he failed to regularly get involved in the play. Of the Spurs starters, Kane ranked in last place by some distance for both.

The 25-year-old at least put himself about up against Virgil van Dijk and Joel Matip, contesting more duels (12) than any other player on the pitch – winning half of them.

An off-colour Kane committed two fouls and was fouled on three occasions as he struggled to find any rhythm.

And the 2018 World Cup Golden Boot winner lost possession nine times in total on an evening he will surely hope to quickly forget.

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