Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Eric Dier has backed the club to cope just fine without Harry Kane, as they have done “every season”.
Kane limped off with a hamstring injury during Spurs’ 1-0 defeat to Southampton on New Year’s Day and isn’t expected to feature again for quite some time.
Can Tottenham cope without Kane? Five things to know…
- Kane has scored 31% (11) of Spurs’ 36 Premier League goals this season.
- But the 26-year-old limped off with a hamstring injury during their 1-0 defeat to Southampton.
- In his absence, Lucas Moura played up front and scored during Spurs’ 1-1 FA Cup draw with Middlesbrough.
- Last season, Spurs had a 56% win rate with Kane and a 57% win rate without him.
- And Dier believes this experience of coping without their talisman will help Spurs going forward.
In his absence, just as Mauricio Pochettino did last season, Jose Mourinho fielded Lucas Moura through the middle during Spurs’ 1-1 draw with Middlesbrough in the FA Cup on Sunday and the Brazilian rewarded his manager with a goal.
That said, Kane has been responsible for 31% (11) of Tottenham’s 36 Premier League goals this season — the seventh-highest contribution from a single player to his team — and his absence will leave a gaping hole at the top of the pitch.
But Dier has faith that he and his teammates can cope without the 2018 World Cup Golden Boot winner, drawing on their experience of thriving without Kane in the past.
“Every season we’ve been posed this question we’ve answered it,” the midfielder said. “It’s just up to the other players to step up.
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“Harry’s one of the best strikers in the world, so it would be a loss to any team. He’s a really, really important player for us, but everybody has the opportunity to be an important player.”
Sunday’s result was hardly an ideal start to life without Kane, drawing 1-1 with Championship opposition and in the process, adding another fixture to an already hectic schedule.
And although Dier believes Spurs did enough to win the game, he does admit the north London side must improve moving forward if they’re to taste success this season.
“We need to be better in every aspect. We know that and we’re trying to be,” Dier added. “Yesterday was disappointing.
“After conceding the goal, [Middlesbrough] made it difficult, they played very deep. We controlled the game from the beginning, I think our attitude was good and in the end, we probably should have scored a second.”
Things don’t get any easier for Spurs now, with Mourinho’s side hosting runaway Premier League leaders Liverpool on Saturday before their FA Cup reply with Middlesbrough next Tuesday.