Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino has urged stand-in captain Harry Kane to act like a natural leader as the England striker takes over the armband on Saturday in the absence of Hugo Lloris.
32-year-old Frenchman Lloris will be out for some considerable time after dislocating his elbow in the 3-0 away defeat to Brighton two weeks ago.
Ahead of Saturday's game against Watford, former Espanyol and Southampton manager Pochettino suggested that Kane need not feel the pressure so long as the 26-year-old acts naturally.
“Harry has a good example with Hugo, working with him,” Pochettino said in his pre-match press conference via the Telegraph.
“I think he learned a lot from Hugo. He is young but he is learning a lot from different people and he is very mature. He is capable.
“He does not need to feel too much pressure. He needs to act natural. The most important thing is to not show too much the responsibility on your shoulders, to act natural. When you act natural, if you are a natural leader, you don't feel the responsibility.
“When you do what you feel, what you feel in your heart, it's natural. The problem is if you need to act. If you are not a real leader and you need to act, you spend energy thinking: 'How do I need to face this problem?'
“But if you trust in yourself and you are a natural leader, I promise you don't feel the responsibility. It's like I feel now. Of course it's my responsibility but I am flying. If you see me on Thursday running on the pitch. On Thursday I played boxes [keep-ball sessions] for 10, 12 minutes.”
Quique Sánchez Flores' Watford remain the only Premier League team without a win so far this season. Pochettino has asked his players to play freely after three losses in five matches, including consecutive 7-2 and 3-0 defeats to Bayern Münich and Brighton respectively.
“It is important to win,” Pochettino iterated. “It is the best medicine for everyone. The key is to provide the team with togetherness, calmness and to believe in them. That is the most important. When you arrive in a period like this you can hear a lot of opinions but the most important is our assessment, the way that we talk.”
Former Leicester loanee Kane will take over captain responsibilities for the foreseeable future, with Lloris out until the start of 2020 at the very least.