As Harry Kane clenched his shirt between his teeth after his penalty against France went skyrocket, we all knew what was coming. This was another heroic, gallant England performance. Good, but not just quite there again. Room for improvement. Solid effort. B+. But after the Jordan Pickford masterclass against Colombia in Russia and Rashford’s Italy heartache, it was always unreasonable to think England should be aiming for the moon again. They were playing the reigning world champions after all, and Southgate has raised the bar with this group.
A winter World Cup was always going to be something of an unknown. But if the England trajectory doesn’t always have to be going ‘up’, Harry Kane’s does. We saw with his steely determination to put himself forward for the second penalty (the camera shots were sensational, by the way) that this isn’t a man to be messed with. The fact he’s already tried to set the wheels in motion over an exit previously further evidence this. It’s a little over a year now since he went AWOL from Spurs camp after Manchester City tried to flutter their eyes at him for £127m. His subsequent release of the statement, saying he was: “100 per cent focused on helping the team achieve success” was all well and good, but we all know Kane wants out. And Pep Guardiola is just up the road. Pep flipping Guardiola. He’s quite good, y’know?
Except of course he’s now missed that bus, because robot Haaland is there. It’s hard to know what to make of Antonio Conte right now. He’s getting the job done at Spurs and Kane seems a happy bunny, getting two of their four second-half goals against Crystal Palace recently. He’s now scored 264 goals for the club, only two behind Jimmy Greaves’ club record. But Kane HAS to try and upset the apple cart again and force through a move.
Are Tottenham really going to win the title? Are they ever going to win the Carabao Cup again? Three finals since they last won it in 2008, and – even if they did win this trophy -!Kane absolutely deserves to finish his career with more than just a Carabao Cup medal on the side. We do not want Kane at the end of his career, saying he was happy to show loyalty to Tottenham and be a legend. Poppycock. Yes, Alan Shearer – we know you had no regrets about not joining Manchester United but trophies are ultimately what counts as a footballer, and Kane’s class deserves silverware. Why do you think Gary Lineker can’t resist the FA Cup jibes at Shearer on Match of the Day? I bet Gareth Bale sleeps like a baby.
Enter stage left Teddy Sheringham. Now this was an intelligent footballer. And the parallels with Kane are incredible. Both English. Both Tottenham. He signed under Alex Ferguson, and United rescued a forward and gave him a new lease of life. Sheringham can put his medals on the table and then some. United sit above Tottenham in the league table on 35 points, with a game in hand. Kane at Manchester United would be fantastic. It’s like stealing Andy Cole from Newcastle. Nuzzle the gun in their back silently and escort them out the back door. With echoes of Teddy Sheringham, Kane could pounce on a loose ball and thread it through the eye of a needle to Rashford, who applies the finish. Maybe flicking the V at the Gooners. We’ve seen it with England and it makes perfect sense.
United need a forward, and are not averse to a pensioner knocking the ball about up front. Cavani was a monster. Kane, Rashford and Antony is mouth-watering and it also fixes the Anthony Martial conundrum. Kane wants the Premier League record and he isn’t leaving England any time soon. Manchester United have won a trophy fairly recently, and chucking Kane in there is like setting fire to Tom Hanks’ Wilson ball and stealing all his wood. United could explode. Give him the captain’s armband. He’s the England leader, a model citizen and let him help the youngsters grow. If they could get João Félix on loan too, well then Bob’s your uncle.
Sheringham formed part of a formidable team for United when ‘Fergie’ was ruling all, and strengthening the forward line is what all good teams do. United won everything with Sheringham. THE WHOLE SHEBANG. His first-team chances were limited because of Yorke and Cole, but Yorke and Cole aren’t there anymore, and the European Cup Final of ‘99 lives long in the memory of every United fan, as does Sheringham’s role. Harry Kane could be that next United hero. I’ll bet the conversations when England meet up aren’t over Jack Grealish’s hair or Harry Maguire, but medals. Show us your medals, son.
Kane at Manchester City would have been perfect, but it just shows what a genius bloke Pep Guardiola is. Having missed out on the England captain they then manage to get Erling Haaland in. Erik ten Hag is still bloody good. Manchester United is Manchester United, and Kane could be the next Eric Cantona if he joins. He could be a legend in a United shirt if they get back in the Champions League. Tottenham fans will try to fight it, but it’s time Kane left Spurs to seek personal glory.