“We felt a bit of pressure. I think they need to play regularly this type of game to try to improve.
“We have to continue to work. We have another game that we have to recover for. We have to try to reach the best possible position [in the Premier League] at the end of the season.”
Those were the words of Tottenham Hotspur manager Antonio Conte as his side crashed out of Europe. With Spurs now out of the Champions League, the defeat to the surprise of many making a football bet against AC Milan in the round of 16 confirmed a 15th year without a trophy in the white half of north London.
You’d have to go as far back as 2008 for the last time Spurs picked up silverware, beating Chelsea in the 2008 League Cup, and with their neighbours across at the Emirates Stadium in touching distance of the Premier League title, you’d pay a pretty penny for the thoughts of Harry Kane.
To say Spurs were tame at their new stadium against European stalwarts Milan would be a massive understatement. They were poor. Kane cut a visibly frustrated figure as the full time whistle blew and all signs lead to the 30-year-old’s departure. Antonio Conte has failed to reignite anything in a Spurs side that were so close to lifting silverware under Mauricio Pochettino, but as Kane approaches the twilight of his career and broke Jimmy Greaves’ record as top scorer, what does he have left to prove?
The Golden Boots speak for themselves but after failing to secure a move to Manchester City, now with Erling Haaland up front, it will be interesting to see what Kane’s future entails. With Kane signing a lengthy six-year contract extension he won’t be able to leave the club on a free until the end of next season, and you’d expect Tottenham’s Daniel Levy to once again drive a hard bargain as he did when Pep Guardiola came calling. The figures might not surpass the £100 million that was mentioned when City expressed their interest, but you’d still expect Spurs to retain a handsome fee for their star striker.
For what it’s worth though, Kane is absolutely worth the money. Linked with Manchester United, he could be the difference in taking them from the periphery of the top four all the way to the title. He’s demonstrated his ability to combine with Marcus Rashford before and could be the long-term successor to Cristiano Ronaldo. As much as Wout Weghorst has tried, the Dutchman lacks the ruthlessness in front of goal to fire on all cylinders regularly for United, and adding Kane to that squad would not only increase the England captain’s chances of a trophy but also move him closer to breaking Alan Shearer’s record for most Premier League goals.
A move abroad looks unlikely now with Bayern Munich and Real Madrid having solid options going forward so it’s likely Kane will remain in England. With Chelsea splashing the cash the Blues could also come calling but it will certainly be interesting to see how Kane spends the final years of his career. A trophy with Tottenham would feel a thousand times sweeter than one earnt away from north London, but as desperation creeps in, beggars simply can’t be choosers.