'Always easier': Chelsea manager happy if one Spurs star is missing from line-up

Nathaniel Kay February 3, 2021
'Always easier': Chelsea manager happy if one Spurs star is missing from line-up
Photo by Alex Dodd - CameraSport via Getty Images

New Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel didn’t hold back on the compliments for Tottenham Hotspur captain Harry Kane during his press conference ahead of tomorrow’s derby.

Tuchel was asked what he thought about the Spurs striker and whether Chelsea’s task would be easier with the injured Kane out of the picture.

“It’s always easier if Harry Kane isn’t playing,” Tuchel admitted.

“This is a given. This is absolutely no secret. Harry Kane is one of the best number nines in the world.

“When he’s in shape, he is the role model for every number nine every coach and every team wishes for. In terms of work rate, ambition, mentality and attitude.

Kane – ‘simply outstanding’

“For sure, his goalscoring is simply outstanding. At the moment, we assume he will not play. But we will prepare for all cases.”

Jose Mourinho confirmed in his own press conference Kane wouldn’t feature in the game at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium (8pm tomorrow).

Photo by Rob Newell – CameraSport via Getty Images

Kane injured both ankles during Spurs’ 3-1 defeat at home to Liverpool last week. Sky Sports reported Mourinho remains optimistic over the extent of Kane’s injuries and is eyeing his return in little more than a fortnight.

The England captain has been outstanding for Spurs this season – not only by scoring but assisting as well.

Kane has been involved in two-thirds (67%) of Spurs’ league goals this season and his absence was sorely felt during Tottenham’s recent defeat at Brighton and Hove Albion.

Loves playing Chelsea

Kane also has a pretty decent record against Chelsea, having netted six times in 16 appearances against the Blues.

Mourinho would have been desperate to field his talisman against the team he collected six trophies with spanning two different spells. Especially with Spurs’ recent lack of form.

They have won only twice in the league since 13 December, slumping from title contenders to European outsiders.

Chelsea haven’t been on a great run themselves but Tuchel has steadied the ship, picking up four points from his first two games.

Before that, Chelsea’s only victories in January were against Fulham and in the FA Cup. The stuttering run led to the dismissal of Blues legend Frank Lampard.

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Nathaniel is a football journalist who graduated from the University of Derby. He has worked at Burton Albion as part of their media team for two years. Nathaniel produces regular articles for the club’s official website and match-day programme. He covered the 2018 U20 Women’s World Cup in Brittany and has reported from grounds ranging from non-league up to the Premier League.