Harry Kane anticipates a reaction from Liverpool’s players to the recent appointment of Jürgen Klopp when they visit White Hart Lane on Saturday, but the England striker has suggested Tottenham Hotspur’s excellent fitness levels might actually be better suited to the German’s preferred style of play.
Spurs are unbeaten in the Premier League since the opening day of the campaign and have quietly risen to within touching distance of the European places playing the high energy football favoured by Mauricio Pochettino. Klopp will aim to emulate that high pressing game at Liverpool but, having taken his first day of training on Monday and with the majority of the side’s international players only now returning to their Melwood base, he may need time to impose his own demands on the squad.
“In the first couple of games after a managerial appointment everybody tries to impress so they will probably have that little 5% extra than usual,” said Kane as he contemplated the Saturday lunchtime kick-off in north London. “We expect that. The Liverpool players at England could not wait to get back to start working under him. But we have out-run every team we have played so far this season and that’s a sign we’re playing the manager’s tactics right and are fit enough to do it. And that’s what we have to do again on Saturday. Obviously Liverpool, with a new manager, will be up for it. But we know what we have to do.
“Nobody is really talking about us and the top four, and that’s probably a good thing. We haven’t lost in the league since the first game of the season. We’ve had a few draws where we should have won as well, but we are playing well and doing the right things.”
He added: “We have a fit, young squad and we are training hard. We are happy to stay under the radar and keep putting in good performances because it’s very open this year. That’s down to the standard of the Premier League – anyone can beat anyone, and that’s been shown a lot this season.”
Kane, who has registered just one goal for Spurs to date this season, was unfortunate not to score his third England goal of the season during England’s 3-0 win over Lithuania in Vilnius on Monday though his shot just after the half hour did go in off Giedrius Arlauskis for an own goal against the Lithuania goalkeeper. The forward will go into November’s friendlies eager to test himself against Spain and France and prove he merits inclusion in next summer’s squad for Euro 2016.
“Winning all 10 qualifiers is a great achievement, and we are very proud,” he added. “But we can’t afford to get carried away as we have some top friendlies coming up against some top sides. We’re looking forward to testing ourselves against those as they’ll be good preparation. Personally, I just need to keep working hard and do my best for Tottenham. That’s all I can do. I’m doing the right things. I’ve just got to keep going at it, keep working hard and the goals will come.”