Harry Kane says he is not ready just yet to do a Lionel Messi by threatening to abandon the club that has nurtured him his entire career. Instead be believes that by staying at Tottenham, manager Jose Mourinho can help him climb the steps he needs to the next level.
Kane was speaking before reports of the Argentine’s u-turn emerged from Spain after Messi initially said he was leaving the only club he had ever played for.
Fortunately for Spurs, the 27-year-old academy graduate has no such doubts about his future in north London.
“Messi’s situation is different to mine,” Kane, who has been linked to Manchester United and Manchester City, said. “He is 33 years old and he has been there a long, long time and won a lot with the club and been very successful.
“I don’t know him and have never spoken to him so I don’t know what his situation is but I am focused on myself.
“I have to perform and the last couple of years have been hindered by injury but I can get to the numbers I know I can with goals and assists.
“Hopefully as a team we can fight for the Premier League and the cup competitions.
“Of course the manager can help with his stature and how good he is but it is about me personally and where the team goes. I think it is more than just a manager who can do that.”
Fitness is bound to play a part and Kane feels that the unprecedented events of 2020 have put him in a good position to rediscover his very best form.
A summer off from international football in 2017 formed the bedrock of a 2017-18 season that culminated with him winning the Golden Boot at the last World Cup.
Since then he battled on through injury to play in the Champions League final and end stages of the Nations League last summer only to break down yet again.
But instead of a race to be fit again for the original Euro 2020 finals, the lockdown gave him the chance to recover fully – and quarantine restrictions gave him an unexpected extra rest ahead of this campaign.
“My body is in a good place,” Kane said. “It has definitely been a chance to refresh and recover.
“I never want to be injured again but it gave me an opportunity to rest during the three-month period and then lockdown gave me another three months to get fit.
“I could rest and refresh mentally as well as physically and I felt really good in the last nine games with Spurs in June and July.
“Another few weeks’ rest and a couple of weeks quarantine has left me in a good place and I am itching to get back.”
Kane has given himself two years to win a major international trophy and turn England into a team of winners for the next generation.
The England captain will lead the side in Iceland on Saturday evening to start the Nations League campaign with everything building up to the delayed Euro 2020 finals next summer.
And with the Qatar World Cup following on swiftly in December 22, Kane sees this as the key opportunity to end all those years of hurt and change the mindset of the whole country.
“From an England point of view I am excited to play in an England shirt again and there is a lot of excitement for the next two years to come,” he said.
“The schedule is busy and we will have to adapt but in my mind I am ready to go for the next two or three years.
“I am 27 and two massive tournaments coming up in two years and it is a real opportunity for me and a team to win something with England. That is the aim.
“In my head, I have many more years to come but these next two are really important and if we can get over the line and win something as a country it will put us in good stead for years to come.”
Gareth Southgate has meanwhile warned that England are expected to be contenders for silverware in upcoming tournaments – starting with the Nations League.
He said: “I think we always have to measure what our internal targets are and how bold we go publicly and there is a balance there of not heaping pressure on the team but accepting there is expectation on the team.
“We have had a good run of two or three years now and to just get where we did before won’t be received with as many accolades as we had in the past.
“The team has to acknowledge that but they are hungry for that.
“That is why Raheem [Sterling], Harry being here signals that intent and signals the desire to take every opportunity they can to play for England but also to win things with England.”
Published at Fri, 04 Sep 2020 21:31:00 +0000