Mourinho: Next level for world-class Kane is titles

By Dom Farrell 23 November 2019 16
Mourinho: Next level for world-class Kane is titles

Jose Mourinho believes Harry Kane is one of the best strikers in the world and wants to take him to the next level by winning titles at Tottenham.

Kane blossomed into an elite performer for club and country under the guidance of Mauricio Pochettino and begins a new chapter at Spurs on Saturday, when Mourinho takes charge of the club for the first time away to West Ham.

Despite the clear achievement of establishing Tottenham as a Champions League staple during his time in charge, a flimsy stick used to beat Pochettino's achievements was his lack of a major trophy.

Mourinho, as a league-winner in four different countries, is a specialist in this regard and believes it is something Kane needs to take his career up another gear.

"He is one of the best strikers in the world, no doubt," he said.

"He just needs his team with him. If his team is England or Tottenham, he needs this team to go with him to the next level.

"What is the next level? Titles. With us, with England, he needs to bring something to highlight the quality that he has as a player, the goals he scores, what he brings to the teams.

"He is a top striker and, you are right, I have worked with some of the top ones."

Tottenham head into the weekend languishing in 14th position in the Premier League, 20 points away from leaders Liverpool.

In the long-term, though, Mourinho does not feel ambitions should be limited for Kane and his team-mates.

"At this moment I think only of West Ham and Olympiacos," he said, referring to Spurs' forthcoming midweek opponents. "Try to win against West Ham and try to qualify for the next round of the Champions League,

"But with the squad we have, with the quality of the structure of the club, I think we can have the same ambitions as people and clubs potentially bigger than us.

"I don't want my players to fear everything. We go for everything against everybody."

The man responsible for putting much of that structure in place is chairman Daniel Levy, whose status as a divisive figure among the Tottenham faithful became a little more entrenched by Mourinho's appointment.

Mourinho is full of admiration for Levy and his reputation as a tough transfer market operator, remarking it is "mission impossible" for any club wanting to take Kane away from north London.

"I used to be in clubs that fear him. It's true," he said.

"He's powerful. He's a business man but he's a football man. He has big experience as part of his intelligence overall.

"He's a football man. He understands football, he understands the industry, he understands its evolution. It's great to have him on my side."

Another possible bone of contention as Mourinho looks to establish himself at Tottenham is likely to be their style of play, considering how the 56-year-old's reputation for pragmatism does not exactly mesh with the high-octane approach under Pochettino that came to be much-admired.

"The fans must be happy, the players must be happy and I must be happy. This is a process," he added.

"One thing is the end product and another thing is the moment you start. I'm not going to try to make some tactical tics, not incredible changes.

"I am not going to try to be Einstein, but I am going to try to make the players play the way I like them to play.

"Offensive football, yes, but winning matches, not offensive football and don't win a match for 10 or 11 months.

"You are not going to see Harry Kane playing at left-back."

Mourinho clearly has much grander ambitions for his star striker.

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Dom Farrell

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