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Opinion: Why Postecoglou is the right man to usher in the post-Kane era at Tottenham

Since the departure of Mauricio Pochettino, Harry Kane has undoubtedly become the club’s talisman. As Tottenham Hotspur lurched from one coach to the next, desperate to achieve some tangible reward for their recent success at seemingly any cost, Kane has been the one constant source of pride for Spurs fans. To see a great of the game, someone whose name will forever be etched into English football history, play for your team is a privilege few fan bases get to have. Tottenham is no exception.

That’s why his impending departure, which has brought a transfer saga seemingly every summer since Pochettino left and culminated in recent links to Bayern Munich, has been such a major fear for many supporters. Rival fans, and even their own former managers, have derided Spurs’ lack of trophies. “Tottenham’s story is this. 20 years there is the owner and they never won something, but why?” Antonio Conte famously asked in his last press conference.

The reason seems clear enough. Financially, Tottenham lag behind in revenue to Manchester United, Manchester City, Chelsea, and Liverpool, nor do they have the resources of Newcastle United that stems from their ownership. For them to win the Premier League or the Champions League would be a massive overachievement. To win a domestic cup, which they’ve come close to, they would have to sacrifice their league position, harming their financial performance even more.

The result is that trophies are simply not very likely for Tottenham in the short-term. It’s why the likes of Jose Mourinho and Conte felt like such misfits at the club — their aims are diametrically opposed to the trajectory of the club. In the absence of a manager who could unite the club under a coherent vision, Kane remained the shining emblem of the team, a reminder of the excellence the club could produce. When flirting with departure previously, there was little else for fans to latch onto for pride in the team. What else reminded them of Tottenham’s glory? What kept them invested as supporters beyond existing loyalty?

This summer, as Kane’s exit appears increasingly likely, fans are no longer in that position. In Ange Postecoglu, they are the best position they have ever been in to lose Kane.

Part of that is tactical. Postecoglu brings a highly specific way of playing, one that is far more proactive than his predecessors. He will give the team more structure in attack, with clearer mechanisms to create and score goals that don’t primarily rely on individual brilliance or existing chemistry. Spurs will be less reliant on Kane and his ability to both orchestrate and finish attacking moves to score goals.

The former Celtic man’s style necessitates particular player profiles. For his striker, the Australian usually prefers a relentless channel runner, someone who makes selfless and constant movements off the ball and has blistering pace to go in behind. Kane would obviously be an asset in any system, but those tasks are not his strength. Postecoglu’s replacement for the Englishman will undoubtedly be a worse striker, but he could be a better profile fit for his tactical setup.

More importantly, Postecoglu is the kind of manager around which the club can be built. This is not Mourinho or Conte striding into Tottenham with a host of league medals and an air of being a little too good for everything around them. This is someone who sees Tottenham as the apex of his career. This is someone who wants to be invested in the club, to build it over time.

He is the kind of coach that Spurs are most likely to get success through, because the club doesn’t need to spend top dollar they don’t have to buy elite players to get the most out of him. They can build slowly, investing in young talents for Postecoglu to develop them into elite players that could challenge for elite silverware. It’s a rendition of the Pochettino era, but with someone fresh, different, and determined.

So as Kane is leaving, something is building in his place. There is a vision for the club, something that the fans can become invested in. They will perhaps never have a player like Kane — a figure with his organic connection to the club and his talent. Yet in Postecoglu, they have someone new to rally behind, not just for him to succeed or win trophies, but someone to restore pride in being a supporter of the club. Whether or not Kane becomes a Bayern player this summer, Spurs should be hopeful for a new future under the auspices of Ange Postecoglu.

Read – Ranking the six biggest non-Premier League transfers of the summer so far

Read Also – Five of the worst Premier League kits released this summer

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