Sol Campbell isn’t exactly a favourite at White Hart Lane.
The former England defender was Tottenham captain when he left – for free – for Arsenal back in 2001. He instantly became a hero at Highbury and a villain in N17, and has now had his say on Harry Kane’s difficult start to the season.
After 31 goals in 51 appearances last season, Kane is now the darling of White Hart Lane but he has failed to score in the opening four Premier League games of the new campaign. A goal against San Marino on Saturday was taken well and got him off the mark, but it is in the Premier League that he will be judged.
“Defenders have been studying his game,” Campbell explained. “That is what you do if you are a proper defender.”
A year ago the England striker was essentially an unknown quantity, but defenders now have hours of footage of him at the very highest level. They can try to suss out his weaknesses and limit his strengths.
“I always did,” Campbell said.
“What does he do when he gets into a certain position, what is his favourite movement, how does he put a defender in a certain position, when does he accelerate, where does he not like going?
“He’s a marked man now, but the club’s biggest problem is that they only recently spent £100m and did not get it right.”
Tottenham have had a disappointing few years after money from the sales of players like Luka Modric and Gareth Bale was reinvested poorly.
Without losing any key men this time around, the second biggest club in north London may well begin to turn things around. However, they still won’t escape Arsenal’s shadow. Even on Saturday, Arsenal’s very own Theo Walcott scored twice after Kane had grabbed his goal. Classic of the relationship between the north London rivals.