Mourinho claps back at Merson...


Mourinho claps back at Merson with Rafa-esque facts rant

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Tottenham manager Jose Mourinho insists Harry Kane has no problem scoring goals in his team.

Former Arsenal forward Paul Merson's suggested Kane may have to leave Spurs, because of Mourinho's style of play.

Kane started his first Premier League game of 2020 on Friday night in Spurs' 1-1 draw with Manchester United.

The 26-year old didn't manage a single touch in United's penalty area during the game.

Speaking on Sky Sports' Soccer Saturday, Merson suggested Kane's low profile was down to the tactics of Mourinho, "When Jose took the job I worried for Harry Kane," the ex-Arsenal man said.

"He played under Pochettino and Tottenham sort of had a go wherever they went. There were goals, there were crosses, there were shots.

"[But now] he's going to be playing up front on his own and it is going to be hard work. In the end he's trying to hit 60-yard passes just to be involved in the game. That's not Harry Kane."

But speaking ahead of Tuesday's visit of West Ham, Mourinho channelled his old sparring partner Rafa Benitez in producing some facts.

"First of all Harry played his first game for six months, and if you watch and analyse the game, compared Harry Kane with Anthony Martial," Mourinho said via a Zoom conference.

"It was a game of many chances, it was a game where the two strikers had a lot of chances.

"Do you give credit to my defence for Martial game, do you give credit to the United defence for the occasions we create or didn’t create? You have to look at it in a balanced approach.

Harry doesn’t play a game for six months. The record of goals that Harry has for me is easy for me. Go to your data and it’s easy to see how many matches he played with me and how many goals he scored before his injury.

"I had a few strikers that played for me and they’re not bad. I have a guy called (Didier) Drogba he played for me four seasons, he scored 186 goals – an average 46 goals per season. I had another guy who is also not bad, played for Juventus now. He played for me three seasons, he scored 186 goals, which gives an average of 56 goals per season. I had another guy who is also not bad, called Karim Benzema. He played for me three seasons, he was not always starting because he was quite young at the time, he scored 78 goals in three seasons, which gives a 26-goal average per season.

"I had another called (Diego) Milito, he played one season, he scored 30 goals, won three titles. I had another guy, he played for one and a half seasons seasons, in the other half he had a big injury. A tall guy called Zlatan (Ibrahimovic). He scored 58 goals, which gives a 29 average per season.

"So dear Paul, I have lots of respect for you. I think Harry Kane has no problem at all to score goals in my teams, especially when he’s fit and fresh and has routines of playing. That’s my message to somebody I have lots of respect for."

Tottenham have extended the contracts of defender Jan Vertonghen and goalkeeper Michel Vorm.

Their deals were due to expire at the end of the month, but they'll now be available for the rest of the rescheduled Premier League season.

Spurs have also confirmed the loans of Danny Rose at Newcastle and Kyle Walker-Peters, with Southampton, will continue until the end of the campaign.

"It’s very important of course," Mourinho said of Vorm and Vertonghen's extensions.

"Now we’re focused on this period that will end in the end of July. Let’s see what happens after that but after that will be a few days holidays or preparation for the new season.

"But now, for the next month, we needed to make sure Jan and Michel were available for us. That shows their commitment to the club and also to the group. That’s very good news for us because we need everybody until the end."

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Didier Drogba Harry Kane Jose Mourinho Paul Merson Spurs Tottenham Hotspur Zlatan Ibrahimovic

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