Harry Kane

Harry Kane's desire to leave is just cause for fans to go after Tottenham hierarchy

Jude Summerfield
Kane after the Carabao Cup final, a game they never looked likely to win
Kane after the Carabao Cup final, a game they never looked likely to win / Clive Rose/Getty Images
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Harry Kane is a rare beast in modern football.

In an age of Fortnite gamers, Ultimate Team coins and Angry Bird sponsorships, the England captain doesn't exactly scream global superstar. If you've seen people bring up his slight lisp on social media, you'll know exactly what we're getting at.

But here we are. Kane is one of the finest players on the planet, undeniably one of the faces of the game in 2021. A player who has evolved from a cute little baby Pikachu from 2014 into a monstrous Gigantamax nowadays - or a more apt Pokemon reference.

But what sets Kane apart from the likes of Robert Lewandowski, Kylian Mbappe or Karim Benzema - in this sense anyway - is his natural connection to Tottenham, the club he has given so much to and received so little in return.

Walthamstow, where he was born, is about three and a half miles away from Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, so Spurs fans have naturally connected with him arguably more than any other player in the club's history. It took no time at all for the 'he's one of our own' chant to become a staple of the supporters' armoury when he first burst on to the scene in Micah Richards fashion.

That strong link the fans perceive is probably one of the main reasons why the news of his desire to leave the club has been received with little more than dejected frowns.

Harry Kane
Kane after the 5-3 win against Chelsea in 2015 / Clive Rose/Getty Images

There's been no outright aggression aimed at Kane. No arguments against his ache for success. Nothing but extremely frustrated understanding.

After all, what more can he do? His record of 165 Premier League goals in 240 appearances is up there rivalling the all time greats. But he has nothing to show for it, aside from runners-up medals for two League Cup finals and the Champions League, the latter a competition he has consistently performed brilliantly in and where he needs to be playing regularly.

This change of heart that has brewing over the last few years is the consequence of the failings from the Tottenham hierarchy that watches from the stands as the first team flounders its way to draws with Crystal Palace and defeats to Dinamo Zagreb. A hierarchy that is extremely concerned with building the club's brand throughout the world - which, in fairness, they have (thanks Amazon) - but not quite as concerned at giving its squad and staff the best possible chance of on-field success.

That's where the resentment from fans has been born. Barely three years ago Spurs were one of the best teams in England, with their youth development earning rave reviews and old manager Mauricio Pochettino praised as a genius.

But just when the time to kick on came, no backing was given. Tottenham came second to Chelsea in the 2016/17 title race, and a squad with greater depth might have gone on to do better and more memorable things. It could have resulted in tangible, physical trophy success, rather than the moments of failure that, while having an echo of glory in them, counted for little more than second place.

Tottenham's fanbase deserves a player like Kane, someone to associate with and almost live vicariously through, but they can have no qualms with his current viewpoint which comes through no fault of their own - supporters have shown him nothing but love and admiration over the years.

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Kane has 22 goals and 13 assists in the Premier League this season / ANDREW COULDRIDGE/Getty Images

Whether he physically stays or goes this summer is something else entirely - having three years left on a contract and being the club's most important asset hardly make you sellable in chairman Daniel Levy's eyes.

But regardless of any summer deal, the situation at the club remains grim. There could be a mass exodus of deadwood in the transfer window while a new manager - whoever that ends up being - takes their time to coerce this Tottenham squad out of the negative characteristics they were conditioned into under former manager Jose Mourinho.

At 27 with his ankles a little battered, Kane hasn't got the time to sit through another rebuild if he's truly ambitious. There can't be any trust in the club's hierarchy that he can realise his own ambitions by standing still when Spurs did the same thing a few years back and let all their good work rot as a result.

Tottenham as a business has lost the backing of its fans. The botched Super League plan has shown supporters around the world what those in high places are really worried about. Charging £60 for a home game against Aston Villa in the club's first match since coronavirus restrictions were lifted was hardly endearing either.

Fans deserve better, and Kane's desire to leave is the latest dung sandwich they have been forced to hoof down. Change is needed, real concrete change, and supporters have to be bold in demanding more of their club for a brighter future - with or without one of their greatest ever players.


For more from Jude Summerfield, follow him on Twitter!

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