Harry Kane may have to consider leaving Tottenham for the sake of his career with the club ‘miles off’ challenging for the Premier League title, according to BT Sport pundit Jermaine Jenas.
Spurs, who sacked Mauricio Pochettino in November, finished the Premier League season in sixth place, missing out on the top four for the first time since the 2014-2015 campaign.
Kane has previously hinted he could leave the north London side, claiming he’s not the type of player to stay at a club ‘for the sake of it’ if he felt there was a lack of progression.
Jermaine Jenas believes Harry Kane could have to leave Tottenham for the sake of his career
The England captain also admitted his team can do better after missing out on a place in the top four, despite making the Champions League final in 2019.
But Spurs could find it even harder to challenge at the top of the table next season with the club borrowing £175million from the Bank of England, meaning Jose Mourinho could be short on funds to spend in the transfer window.
Could that persuade their captain to look for a way out? MailOnline spoke to Jermaine Jenas to hear his thoughts on the striker’s dilemma and the difficulties his former club could face in the upcoming campaign.
IF AMBITION IS NOT MET, THE PLAYER HAS A RIGHT TO GO A DIFFERENT WAY
Tottenham sold Gareth Bale to Real Madrid in 2013 and attempted to rebuild their team with the £85million fee.
Bale has gone on to win multiple Champions League, Copa del Rey and LaLiga titles since leaving London while Spurs have failed to land a trophy. The Welshman left to be a winner – could a similar situation develop with Harry Kane? Jenas thinks so.
‘I do feel like it is a similar situation (to Gareth Bale). I love Harry, he’s one of the best strikers in Europe but I also look at his career,’ Jenas said.
Kane has previously hinted he could leave Spurs if the club does not show signs of progress
Jenas believes Kane’s situation is similar to that of Gareth Bale who left Spurs for Real Madrid
‘I speak to Alan Shearer a lot about the decisions he made in his career and he stands by them and has no regrets, he loves the fact that he played for his boyhood team and what he did for Newcastle and there’s a lot to be respected for that and Harry has a lot of that in him also.
‘But there’s a lot of me that’s kind of looking around and going, look at what Kyle Walker has done since leaving – he’s gone and won two Premier League titles and could get to a Champions League final this year, he’s achieving things in his career and Harry is only picking up more and more injuries every year.
‘I personally would encourage Harry to start having a little knock and considering another move simply from a selfish point of view as a player.
‘Hopefully he doesn’t, I really hope he is more of a mindset of what Alan Shearer which was “I love this club, I love being here and I want to be here for the rest of my career”. But it’s hard for me to think without my footballer’s head on in terms of what I think would be best for him.
‘I only say that because I feel like Tottenham is going in the wrong direction in comparison to where Harry Kane is going and if the ambition is not met between both club and player, I think it’s well within the player’s right to go a different way.’
The BT Sport pundit said he thinks Spurs are going in the wrong directions compared to Kane
SPURS ARE ‘MILES OFF’ CHALLENGING FOR A TITLE
Liverpool were crowned champions for the first time in 30 years but Spurs fans have been waiting since 1961 for their club to bring home a league title.
They came close in the 2016-2017 campaign, keeping pace with leaders Leicester until the final few games when their form dipped and ended up finishing third, behind rivals Arsenal.
‘They’re miles off challenging for a title,’ Jenas claimed.
‘If Mourinho can get them to finals he’s shown that he can win them. It’s not going to be pretty but a win is a win and over the last three games he’s shown exactly what it’s going to be like.
‘But there’s too many holes to jump for Spurs. Defensively they’re nowhere near it, they still need to void that Eriksen has left – a creative spark.
‘There’s too much work to do and I’m not sure they’re going to have the money to spend to do that.’
The north London side are still waiting for their first league title since their last in 1961
JOSE WILL BE ‘LEFT OUT TO DRY’
Spurs were 14th in the table when Mourinho was appointed in November and some fans may see finishing sixth as an achievement given the circumstances.
But Jenas thinks it’s only going to get harder the Portuguese boss who will be expected to make a strong start to the next campaign.
‘It’s going to be really frustrating I think for Mourinho next year because he’s going to be the one left out to dry I think.
‘Essentially he needs players and they are a team that I don’t see getting in the top four right now.
‘They’re not better than Wolves, they’re about on par with Arsenal but actually I see what Arteta is doing and I think that he is just ahead of what Mourinho is doing with his team. I don’t see it being a very pretty season for Jose or Tottenham at all.’
Jose Mourinho could be short on funds to bring in new players ahead of the next season
WILL MOURINHO LAST THE SEASON?
‘I’d like to think he will,’ said the pundit.
‘I’m pretty sick of managers getting put in situations where everything is kind of against them and I think Tottenham is one of the club’s that do that in a way.
‘If you look at what Pochettino did for that football club, to not back him at a time when he needed to be back seemed like a ludicrous decision.
‘The team needed refreshing, they didn’t refresh it and off the back of it there was huge frustration from Poch and the team basically continued, even though they got to the Champions League final they lost 13 league games. It continued its form into this season which was poor.
Jenas said it was a ‘ludicrous’ decision not to back Mauricio Pochettino in the transfer market
‘No managers walk anymore because there’s too much money involved but obviously Jose has come in and taken the job so I would presume there was conversations that there would be investment.
‘Granted, no one could have the pandemic and there was a new stadium and with that, Spurs are probably one of the richest clubs in Europe I think with the amount they make from people coming to games.
‘I’m sure Daniel will have said “this is the project, here’s gonna be the money”. But I’m also sure he’s now gonna come up with an excuse to say “there is no money so deal with it.”
‘In my opinion, I will feel Jose’s frustration and have sympathy for him because his hands are tied.’
Jermaine Jenas is a pundit for BT Sport who challenged the biggest brains in sports data to write the world’s first AI-driven script for a Premier League season, for its #Unscripted campaign. Check out how the report fared at btsport.com.