Jose Mourinho

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Harry Kane fails to rule out future Tottenham exit

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Harry Kane won’t rule out a future Tottenham exit, admitting that it largely depends on lifting silverware with his boyhood club.

Asked by Jamie Redknapp on an Instagram live session whether he would end his playing career at Spurs, the 26-year-old striker responded that it all depends on the “progress of the team” and added that he’s not the type of person to be somewhere just for the sake of being there.

In other words, he wants to win titles with Spurs, soon. If not, his days in north London may be numbered.

It’s one of those things, I couldn’t say yes, I couldn’t say no,” Kane told Redknapp on Sunday. “I love Spurs, I’ll always love Spurs. But it’s one of those things – I’ve always said if I don’t feel we’re progressing as a team or going in the right direction, then I’m not someone to just stay there for the sake of it.

“I’m an ambitious player, I want to improve, I want to get better, I want to become one of the top, top players,” he added. “It all depends on what happens as a team and how we progress as a team. So it’s not a definite I’m going to stay there forever – but it’s not a no either.”

Kane, along with his teammates at the time, got the short end of the stick under Mauricio Pochettino, losing a Champions League final and a League Cup final. The striker is aware that Spurs, top to bottom, have – and have had – the firepower to lift silverware but need the final push, which they may unlock under proven winner Jose Mourinho.

“We’ve been saying that for a couple of years now,” says Kane, “we have got a fantastic team but for one reason or another we haven’t been able to get the trophies that, when you look from the outside, we’ve got the team to get.”

“It’s a hard thing to take as a player. I want to win at everything I do so when we’re coming close and you don’t quite get there it’s hard to take and starts to build up. But from my point of view, and the team’s point of view, all you can do is do everything you can, give your best to win every game, to win trophies. For one reason or another, we haven’t quite got there yet.

“Next year, the gaffer now, it’ll be his first chance to really have a pre-season with the team and embed his values into the team and we’ll see what happens. Of course, I want to win, I want to win team trophies, I want to be doing it sooner rather than later. So we will have to see how it goes.”

Kane, who is third on Spurs’ all-time scoring list, is fond of Mourinho, a manager he grew up watching and respects. The strike admits they chat on a regular basis about soccer and a plethora of other subjects, but is aware that if Spurs want to reap all the benefits from having him onboard, the players will need to leave it all on the field.

“He came in and what you see is what you get,” Kane said. “He’s an honest guy – he’ll tell you if you’re doing things well or if you’re not. If he likes you he’ll tell you and if he doesn’t like you he’ll tell you.

“From my point of view, I have built a good relationship with him. We talk every few days or so, talk about all different things, talk about the team, when we were playing, what we can do, how we can improve.

“For me, it’s great to work under a manager like Jose. Obviously growing up, watching football, he was a big part of that. It’s another opportunity for me to work with one of the best managers in the world.

“I’m excited to see how that relationship unfolds and see what we can do on the pitch. So far he’s been great and I know he’s excited to put his stamp on the team when he gets his opportunity.

“When a manager like him comes in and you know he’s won everywhere, I’m sure he has no intentions to not do that at Spurs. From a player’s point of view we know we have a top, top manager, so it’s up to us to go out there and perform.”

What we love about Tottenham

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This week at ProSoccerTalk we will be detailing what we love about each Premier League club competing in the 2019-20 season and next up is Tottenham.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ] 

Each day we will release details on why who adore each team in particular as we remind ourselves just how awesome the PL is as we await its return following the suspension due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Time to take a closer look at Spurs.


Harry Kane: Since emerging in the first-team scene under Mauricio Pochettino during the 2014-15 campaign, Harry Kane has skyrocketed in Tottenham’s list of greats. The Spurs youth product hit the ground running under the Argentine, finishing as the club’s leading goalscorer of the aforementioned season, and becoming an instant fan favorite.

Kane – who is currently recovering from a left hamstring injury – didn’t stop there; he made sure he was far removed from being a one-hit wonder. As a result, the 26-year-old has lead Spurs in scoring for five straight seasons, placing him third in Tottenham’s all-time goalscoring list. Outside of Jermaine Defoe, no other player in Spurs’ modern day history has had such impact on the offensive side of the game. 

Jose Mourinho: Wherever Jose Mourinho goes, the lights and cameras follow. That reality is no different at Tottenham, as the storied Portuguese manager has brought all of his pros and cons with him to Tottenham Hotspurs Stadium.

After runs with Chelsea and Manchester United, one might have thought that his and Spurs’ paths would never cross, but in November 2019, after Mauricio Pochettino’s sacking, Mourinho became the boss at Tottenham. Life thus far at the helm of the north London side hasn’t been ideal for him, crashing out of Champions League play and sitting eighth on the table. But a manager of Mourinho’s stature is definitely not worth crossing off – whether he’d be at Chelsea, Manchester United ⬇️or Spurs.

Tottenham Hotspur Stadium: In addition to having a proven goalscorer and manager in their ranks, Tottenham have the privilege of playing home games in England’s newest and most technologically advanced football stadium: Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

The 62,000-capacity state-of-the-art stadium features a retractable field, a microbrewery, an in-house bakery, heated seats with USB ports, the longest bar in the UK among others unimaginable extras for a sports venue. The stadium opened in April 2019, and replaced the legendary White Hart Lane.

What now for Tottenham?

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Tottenham were so far off the pace in their 3-0 shellacking at RB Leipzig on Tuesday that the main question swirling around Jose Mourinho’s team is simply: what now?

[ MORE: Premier League schedule

Injury-hit Spurs have been knocked out of the UEFA Champions League and FA Cup over the last week and now they have nine Premier League games to try and qualify for the Champions League.

“No team in the world would cope with injuries for such a long time,” Mourinho said about Tottenham’s injury problems which has seen Heung-Min Son, Harry Kane and Steven Bergwijn ruled out.

They currently sit seven points behind fourth-place Chelsea and even if fifth-place in the PL ends up being a Champions League spot (due to Man City’s European ban, which they are appealing) they are four points off fifth-place Man United and could fall seven points off the pace if they lose at home against the Red Devils this Sunday (Watch live, 12:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com).

After getting the ‘new manager bump’ when he arrived in November, Mourinho is winless in six games, the longest run in his managerial career, and he has now lost three games in a row in Europe for the first time as a manager. So, he’s in unchartered territory in the short-term even though their schedule between now and the end of the season is pretty favorable.

Of course, somehow cobbling together some wins and qualifying for the Champions League is now Mourinho’s one and only goal for the rest of this season, but looking beyond this season, which players should Spurs keep and how should Mourinho set up this team?

Below is a look at the areas where Mourinho needs to strengthen.


Tottenham possible starting lineup, 2020-21 season

—– Lloris —–

—- ? —- Alderweireld —- ? —- ? —-

—— ? —– ? —–

—- Son —- Dele —- Lo Celso —-

—– Kane —–


So, Mourinho basically needs a brand new defense and two holding midfielders and even including Alderweireld and Lloris in the lineup above is generous.

Anybody who has watched Tottenham over the last 12-18 months knows that defensively they’ve badly needed reinforcements and in midfield they have never truly replaced Mousa Dembele who left in January 2019.

With Tanguy Ndombele called out by Mourinho, his future at Spurs seems very uncertain and the likes of Harry Winks and Eric Dier have struggled massively in recent weeks. A Nemanja Matic-esque destroyer is needed in midfield and that should be a big aim, along with improving the defense, this summer. Going forward they have plenty of options even though the injuries to Son and Kane have underlined just how important they both are to Tottenham.

Tottenham need six new players, at least, to turn them into genuine top four contenders again and this rebuild was needed a long, long time before Mourinho arrived.

Mauricio Pochettino‘s reputation is growing by the day as Tottenham continue to unravel. Poch did all he could to stem the tide of regression but it is clear that Daniel Levy needs to sanction an almighty squad overhaul with only a few core players kept at the club beyond this summer.

Mourinho should be given time and a full season to be judged but this summer is going to be massive in determining the direction Tottenham head in. What is there identity as a team? Which players can they rely on? How many new signings will they make? Tottenham have a busy offseason coming up, no matter what happens in the final weeks of the season.

Mourinho: Injury-hit Spurs need to be ‘very strong to cope with limitations’

Jose Mourinho
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Jose Mourinho is taking the simplest approach to Tottenham Hotspur’s Champions League exit.

Spurs were rolled over by RB Leipzig in the second leg of their Round of 16 tie on Tuesday, falling 3-0 on the day and 4-0 on aggregate without Harry Kane, Heung-Min Son, and Steven Bergwijn.

[ MORE: Dele Alli reaction ]

Mourinho said things were going to have go nearly perfect for Spurs to overcome the 1-0 first leg deficit without those key pieces.

Spurs were not close to their best, and they were punished.

“There is nobody to blame when it looks like in every match we have a traumatic injury that ends with months and months,” he said on television after the match. “That’s the history of this season. It started with problems and you look at when I arrived our position at the table. The negative history starts with the first injury and look to our bench and look to our pitch with Tanganga with his first (Champions League) match and Sessegnon his second match. It’s very, very hard.”

[ MORE: Premier League schedule ]

Mourinho said he’s confident his team will be much better when healthy next season, adding Kane, Son, Bergwijn and Moussa Sissoko to the fold.

That doesn’t help much ahead of a huge weekend tilt with Manchester United. Spurs will have two more days rest than the Red Devils, but can fall seven points back of the top five with a loss on Sunday at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

“With the squad we have it’s going to be very difficult if we have the same squad we had today tomorrow,” he said in his post-match press conference, via Football.London. “We have games ahead and we have to fight. We are going to fight and the players need to be very strong to cope with the limitations we have. We are not going to recover any players before Sunday.”

That’s an awful lot of foreshadowing from Mourinho, who would do well to strike a more positive pose for his players and fans ahead of a reunion with old pals Manchester United.

Spurs: Kane trains, but Bergwijn season in jeopardy

Harry Kane
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The Tottenham Hotspur boss will find it hard to repress a smile knowing that star striker Harry Kane is back on the training pitch following a long injury absence.

But he’ll also be lamenting yet another injury to his attack corps.

[ MORE: Premier League schedule ]

Kane hasn’t played since a New Year’s Day loss to Southampton led to hamstring surgery, but has 17 goals in 25 matches this season.

He’s missed eight Premier League matches, five FA Cup outings, and the first leg of Spurs’ Champions League Round of 16 tie with RB Leipzig.

Teammate Dele Alli is excited at the prospect of Kane’s return. From Football.London:

“It’s a massive boost. Even when he’s coming to games to have him speaking, he’s a leader. Having had hamstring injuries, I don’t want him to rush it, but I know we need him as well.”

However, there’s bad news for Spurs this Monday, as January signing Steven Bergwijn is facing some time on the sidelines.

Bergwijn suffered a “significant” ankle sprain against Burnley this weekend, the team announced, and faces “an extended period of rehabilitation.”

“I don’t expect him to play again this season,” Mourinho said.

That means Spurs will have to overturn its 1-0 first leg UCL deficit without Kane, Heung-Min Son, and Bergwijn. That’s a tall ask.