Postecoglou: ‘Tottenham not better without Kane…just different’

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Manager Ange Postecoglou has scoffed at talk Tottenham Hotspur are a better team without Harry Kane, but admitted the departure of the club’s record goalscorer has allowed other individuals to flourish.

The North-London side beat Crystal Palace 2-1 on Friday to extend their lead at the top of the English Premier League by five points.

Kane left Spurs on the eve of the season to join Bayern Munich in a deal that could rise to £120 million ($145.76 million) in add-ons, and which had been expected to derail a club that only managed to finish eighth in the Premier League last term.

The opposite has occurred with Postecoglou able to mastermind an unbeaten start in the top flight that has sent Tottenham to the summit.

This posed the question that are the north London club better without their ex-talisman Kane, who scored 278 times in 430 appearances for his boyhood team.

Postecoglou cited Kane’s final outing in Lilywhite a four-goal salvo in a friendly against Shakhtar Donetsk on Aug. 6 as evidence against the aforementioned rhetoric.

The  sale of the England captain has changed the dynamic of his attack, which is now led by the likes of Son Heung-min, Richarlison, Dejan Kulusevski and new signing Brennan Johnson.

“I’m not into this commentary that we’re a better team without Harry because the last game Harry played for us, he did alright in our system when he scored four goals.

“It’s fair to say we would have been able to squeeze him in somewhere – and I’m being sarcastic there – but him not being there just allows us to bring different individuals into the team and they change the dynamic.

“Having Sonny as our nine is different from having Harry or even Richy as our nine. Having Deki as a winger or having Brennan Johnson as a winger changes it even if the structure is the same.

“Not having Harry there does change us as a team because we’re using different individuals, but if Harry was still here the structure would be the same and we’d have the same fundamentals of trying to dominate opposition, press the opposition, all those kind of things would still be there.”

Tottenham captain Son has shouldered the burden in Kane’s absence with eight goals.

While new number 10 James Maddison has immediately hit the ground running.

Maddison scored for the third time on Monday night against Fulham and has also provided five assists to quickly become the team’s fulcrum.

Postecoglou said of the former Leicester playmaker: “He’s very intuitive around the game and at understanding the game.

“For all the players we try to provide a framework of education where we give them information to improve them as individuals, but some of them take them in a more broader concept of the team aspect and Madders is one of those.

“He takes the information but not just from an individual aspect but how it can help the team. The goal he scored the other night came not from his individual ability but just from him working hard.”

 

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