Tottenham: Harry Kane can still catch Mohamed Salah
With only five games remaining in Spurs’ league season, Kane can still close the gap to Salah to claim his third golden boot.
Harry Kane’s Spurs have only five games remaining in their Premier League season, starting their final run-in with a trip to the south coast to face Brighton and Hove Albion on Tuesday evening.
The Englishman was eventually, controversially, awarded Spurs’ second goal away at Stoke City and now stands at 25 goals for the season.
An electric Mohamed Salah is currently leading the top-flight’s scoring charts after he netted his 30th of the season in a 3-0 home win over Bournemouth at the weekend.
Kane will be all too aware of the fact that time is running out for him to cut the gap between himself and the Egyptian but it is still possible. Here are four reasons why…
1. Strong finisher
Kane has got a rather unwanted reputation for being a slow starter. Despite winning the golden boot for the past two seasons, Kane still has never scored a Premier League goal in August.
At the business end of the season though, it’s a different story.
In the past two seasons, Kane has netted a total of 14 goals in 15 games in the months of April and May. A short spell on the sidelines due to an injury has limited his potential to play maximum minutes recently, however, with the England striker completing 90 minutes only twice in the last four games.
Kane, though, will be buoyed by the fact that Spurs face bottom club West Brom and Leicester City in two of their last three, having scored four against the latter in May last season.
2. It’s a World Cup year
Although it will be tough to see Kane’s position as England’s automatic centre-forward pick under threat anytime soon, he will be well aware that his performances in tournament football will need to improve.
Having endured a torrid European Championships in the summer of 2016, Kane will be eager to silence his critics on the international stage.
This will be his first appearance in the sport’s biggest competition, having not been selected in Roy Hodgson’s squad for the 2014 edition.
Well aware of the pressure on his shoulders, a strong finish domestically would put Kane in an ideal frame of mind for Russia.
3. Salah likely to feature less
Kane will secretly hope Liverpool can get past AS Roma in their Champions League semi-final as long as it’s a close-run thing.
With Liverpool’s position in the top four almost a guarantee, manager Jurgen Klopp will likely turn most of his attention to winning Europe’s elite crown.
The German elected to rest most of his star players, including Salah, for the 0-0 draw with local rivals Everton ahead of their second-leg quarter-final tie with Manchester City.
It was a decision that showed exactly where Klopp’s head was – they were already 3-0 up from the first-leg.
Liverpool face a trip to West Bromwich Albion only three days before they welcome AS Roma to Anfield, so it would appear safe to suggest that Klopp may again field a weakened side at the Hawthorns in preparation for the crunch first-leg.
With the reverse fixture the following Wednesday, it may mean that Salah won’t feature again in the Premier League until May 6th, in the Reds’ penultimate fixture.
4. Teammates in form
Kane’s chances of catching Salah will be boosted by the fact that his teammates that he so often relies upon for service are playing well.
Christian Eriksen is arguably in his best form of the season after scoring four goals in his last four games, as well as two assists in his last six.
Dele Alli has also stepped up his output in recent weeks, scoring three goals and adding three assists in his last three matches.
The versatile Korean Heung-Min Son has also chipped in with four goals and an assist in his last five.
As long as those around him can keep up their current performances, Kane will fancy them to help him close the gap.
A big ask
It’s undoubtedly going to be a difficult task for Kane but the possibility of winning a third-consecutive golden boot will put him in illustrious company.
Only Alan Shearer and Thierry Henry have ever won the award three years in a row: the Frenchman claiming his treble back in the 2005/06 campaign.
Kane needs six goals in five games to claim the outright lead and will need to hope of course that Salah’s chances to add to his tally are now very limited.
Having ruffled feathers after laying claim to Eriksen and Spurs’ second at Stoke, however, will Liverpool be more determined than ever to stop Kane and ensure Salah stays on top of the pile?
What do you think? Does Harry Kane still have a chance to win the golden boot?