Tottenham boss Antonio Conte has praised Harry Kane to the rafters and even admitted that the England captain is one of the best players he has had the pleasure to coach. The Italian also added that Kane’s lack of form this season is very strange but that doesn’t change his judgement over him.
With Nuno Espirito Santo struggling to get the best out of Harry Kane, Antonio Conte’s arrival at Tottenham had fans overjoyed because of the Italian’s success with forwards in the past. The likes of Romelu Lukaku, Lautaro Martinez, Diego Costa and co have all thrived under Conte’s regime and many expected Kane to join those ranks. But while the forward has played every game possible under the Italian, things haven’t quite clicked yet.
Instead, Kane has scored no goals in the league, since he netted in mid-October, although he did score one against NS Mura in a 2-1 loss in the Europa Conference League. Yet despite that, Conte has been full of praise for his star man and admitted that Kane is “one of the best I’ve had the pleasure to train”. Not only that, the Italian added that while Jurgen Klopp prefers someone like Mohamed Salah, Harry Kane is his choice and a key star for Spurs.
"Harry is a world-class striker. Every day that I train him I understand very well that he's a world-class striker. He's one of the best I've had the pleasure to train. He's amazing. I like to have him in my team. For sure Jurgen [Klopp, Liverpool boss] likes to have [Mohamed] Salah," Conte said, reported the Standard.
“But I like to have Harry in my team. He's an important player for us and my expectation was very high and to play an important game against Liverpool."
Yet, Kane’s form or lack thereof has been bewildering to many especially after the forward netted 23 goals in the league alone last season. Not only that, this is the first time in years that Kane hasn’t scored at least double figures across all competitions and Conte admitted that it’s “very strange”. But the Tottenham boss also revealed that it hasn’t changed his judgement as footballers go through spells like this in their career.
"It's very strange, no? It's very strange. If you compare what he did in the past, this is very strange. But also in the past, in my experience, before as a player and then as a coach, it happens. I played with important strikers who, for a long period, didn't score.
"But my judgement about them didn't change. I wanted to have them in my team also if they don't score. Because if you have Harry Kane in your team, you feel stronger, for sure,” he added.