WRITTEN BY CHARLES ODUGBESAN
*Sigh* A lifelong Gooner, about to spend precious time writing about a player from the other team in North London. Woe is me!!
Recently I’ve had some footballing conversations with friends and of late, Tottenham Hotspur striker Harry Kane has been a consistent topic of conversation. One of the most controversial statements I had heard from any of these conversations was one of the boys claiming the following:
Now to be perfectly honest, I don’t care too much just as long as we all acknowledge that Thierry Henry is number one. But as outlandish a statement about Kane as this may be, are there any foundations to it? As the English edges towards the brink of joining the Premier League 100 club, let’s see if we can put together arguments for and against this claim.
As a striker it is your primary job to put the ball in the back of the net right? And at this moment in time few could argue there is a striker in world football, let alone in England, who is doing this at the level that Harry Kane is. And if we’re talking numbers and efficiency, you can definitely make a case for him being one of the best strikers the league has ever seen. With his brace against Everton on January 13th, Kane became only the third player to record a 20+ goal return in four consecutive seasons. The only other two to do this are Alan Shearer and Jesus… I mean Thierry Henry. Kane also needs one more goal to officially join the league’s 100 club, and providing he does so in the next 7/8 games, will have reached the landmark at the second fastest rate ever behind Alan Shearer and eclipsing Sergio Aguero. And currently, the man is on pace to win his 3rd Golden Boot in the league which would tie him with Shearer. Only one man has 4. Guess who.
We could pull up a whole host of facts to further support Kane’s case but when you factor all this with the fact that the man is only 24 years of age, one can only imagine what his individual honours list looks like by the time he is in his 30’s. It’s frightening!
Now let’s bring this thing back down to earth for a minute! Harry Kane is not ALREADY a top two striker in league history. At least not yet anyway. And just as I argued for, I’ll give you three reasons why.
First off, Kane is still only 27th in the list of all time scorers in the league and still has to score 121 domestic goals to equal Jimmy Greaves’ club record. If his career were to end tomorrow (touch wood) he wouldn’t realistically have grounds for such a huge claim. Secondly, as fantastic as his last four seasons have been, he doesn’t boast the longevity of great strikers such as Wayne Rooney, Sergio Aguero, Thierry, Shearer, Sheringham or Andy Cole; among others. Longevity is a crucial part of evaluating someone’s greatness, so for Kane perhaps this claim is a little premature. And finally, and perhaps most importantly, besides the growing list of individual honours, Kane doesn’t have a single trophy to his name yet. Not even a Carabao Cup. If Harry Kane is to secure his legacy as one of the league’s best ever strikers then sooner or later he will need to start picking up some silverware. And for you Spurs fans, I’m fairly sure that the club he is currently at is not the best place for him to win trophies.
So in conclusion, I think most of us can agree that the claim is a little far-fetched. But Harry Kane’s career has only just begun. He is still a good 3 or 4 years from hitting his prime. And if he remains consistent or even improves his output and compliments this with silverware, I may have to think about rewriting. But for now let’s mark him down as the Man Of The Moment!