England coach Gareth Southgate believes Harry Kane’s disappointing Tottenham form is at least partly due to upheavals and “changes” at the club that he has not had to deal with internationally.
Kane ended the 2020-21 season with more Premier League goals (23) and assists (14) than any other player, making him the first player to top both charts in a single season since Andy Cole in 1993-94 .
But after unsuccessfully attempting to break away from Spurs in pre-season, Kane’s productivity and determination have taken a massive blow.
He has not scored a single goal in six league games this season – the last time Kane played more games in the Premier League without a goal was eight games between April and October 2014.
Some have attributed his problems to playing under a new head coach at Nuno Espirito Santo, and Southgate agrees that upheavals can have an impact, especially when a manager makes a system change.
“What’s going on with his club is really none of my business,” Southgate told reporters ahead of Tuesday’s World Cup qualifier against Hungary.
“There are a lot of changes in the club, a new manager and new tactical formations, so as with all players there will be an adjustment.
“In terms of what we’re asking of him, I think we obviously have a fixed style of play here. His teammates know him, he knows his teammates, he knows the game patterns we’re playing towards.
“I can’t talk about the club, but I think he feels in good hands with us. It’s an environment where he knows we believe, but we have to push him. We constantly want improvements from the team.
“Of course, as the captain, he knows that he also has to set standards in training every day. I cannot fault his dedication and commitment to what we do. He has a real desire to get on well with us. “
Kane’s form with England certainly doesn’t matter.
He has scored in each of his last 15 World Cup and European Championship qualifiers and is close to a number of scoring records.
First, he’s just one step away from hitting England’s most competitive goals record (Wayne Rooney, 37).
And after that, Kane – whose total goals for England is 41 – will undoubtedly keep an eye on the most coveted England record of all: Rooney’s unrivaled haul of 53.
The only other players who have scored more for England than the current captain are Jimmy Greaves (44), Gary Lineker (48) and Bobby Charlton (49). .
“If you compare yourself to the five or six other players at the top of this scoreboard and look at those names, it reminds you of how much Harry has accomplished on a personal level,” Southgate continued.
“And I know what was more important to him, it is that the team reached two semi-finals and one final. He’s undoubtedly a player who has to prove himself over and over again.
“I think he knows that, I think he enjoys it, and we know that when those chances go down, you have great confidence that they will hit the net, that’s his technical ability and his mentality and calm.” when these opportunities come. “