Tottenham Hotspur manager Jose Mourinho has eased fears that talisman Harry Kane could miss Sunday’s crucial north London derby against Arsenal on Sunday, after the striker limped out of Thursday night’s win over Dinamo Zagreb with what appeared to be a knee injury.
Kane scored twice in the Europa League last 16 first leg against the Croatian champions, finding the net midway through either half to give Spurs a commanding aggregate lead ahead of the away leg in Zagreb next week. But he was unable to complete the game.
The 27-year-old took a knock to his knee and was replaced for the closing stages.
With the derby against Arsenal coming up at the weekend and victory vital in the race for a top four finish, there was unsurprising concern as he hobbled off the pitch. But Mourinho has suggested he thinks there is little to worry about and that Kane will be fine by Sunday.
“Sunday is a match everyone wants to play and little things will not stop him. I don’t have the feeling it is anything serious,” the Spurs boss told BT Sport of the situation.
Kane’s brace took his personal goal tally for the season to 26 across all competitions, which is already better than his tally in each of the last two seasons, while he is well on course to go over 30 goals for the first time since the 2017/18 campaign.
But the England captain also has 16 assists to his name and is the Premier League’s leading goal provider, in addition to being the division’s second top scorer. Mourinho also values him at defensive set pieces similar to the way he famously relied on Didier Drogba at Chelsea.
“[Kane] is doing everything,” the Spurs boss explained.
“He is doing the striker job of scoring goals. The team work of creating space and linking play and the extra work not many strikers do in defence.
“He has an incredible number of clearances from crosses and corners. We couldn’t be happier. I gave a rest to many of the players, but with Harry on the pitch it is a different story for us.”
Victory for Spurs in the derby on Sunday is not only crucial for their own prospects in the hunt for a Champions League place, but it could also effectively end Arsenal’s disastrous Premier League season and consign them to a mid-table finish.