Harry Kane’s Tottenham Host Everton

Tottenham striker Harry Kane

Two teams in the Premier League vying for European competition next season are off to less than stellar starts to their domestic campaigns this year. Tottenham, last year’s sixth place finishers, have yet to register a win through their opening three matches and the team’s talismanic striker, Harry Kane, has yet to open his account for the season. On the other hand, Everton, one year removed from Europa League competition, have done one win better than Tottenham this campaign, but are coming off of a less than encouraging 2-0 loss to league leaders Manchester City. Who will take the points at White Hart Lane on Sunday?

In the first three matches of the season, it’s been Tottenham’s own play that seems to cost them points. The opening game of the season against Manchester United saw a Kyle Walker own-goal sink Spurs in a 1-0 loss. The second week against Stoke City looked set for Spurs’ first win of the season after a 2-0 lead going into the second half, but a late penalty paved the way for Stoke to fight back for a 2-2 draw. In last week’s matchup against Leicester City, an 80th minute Dele Ali goal again looked to seal three points for Tottenham, but a mental lapse saw Leicester equalize just 90 seconds later. In order to get a much needed win to start the season, Spurs will have to get past this habit of giving up late goals and shooting themselves in the foot.

One concern Spurs’ fans may have in these early stages of the season is the lack of firing power from last year’s star man Harry Kane. Last year, Kane was forced to spend the first several matches watching from the sidelines before breaking into Mauricio Pochettino’s starting 11 and it took until October for the Englishman to start consistently finding the back of the net. The 22-year-old striker could be in the midst of a miniature sophomore slump, but I think that it’s just a matter of time before he starts finding the back of the net again. A shaky Everton backline that gave up three goals to Barnsely in the League Cup could provide Kane with the perfect opportunity.

For the visitors, the main storyline this week, and for much of the transfer window, has been the future of star defender John Stones. The 21-year-old is considered one of the brightest prospect in the English game and his talent has drawn high praise from John Terry and Gary Cahill of Chelsea, with the London club rumored to have tabled a near £40 million. Over the week, it has been confirmed by the club that Stones has officially handed in a written transfer request to try and force through a move to Chelsea, but Roberto Martinez told reporters he would promptly reject the request. In the game against Barnsley on Wednesday, Martinez praised Stones’ performance and said that he did not believe the transfer rumors had affected the defender’s focus during the match. Unless Chelsea make fast work of the transfer and finalize the deal before Saturday, it looks as if Stones will be in the starting lineup for the Toffees. Can he maintain his focus against the likes of Kane and Christian Eriksen?

On the other end of the pitch, Toffees fans have begun to see the resurgence of Ross Barkley. Other than the disappointing match against City last week, the Toffees had scored five goals through their first two matches, with the 21-year-old sharing the team lead with two goals. Barkley, who scored just two goals all of last season, has seemingly rediscovered the form that made him one of the hottest young commodities in the game just two years ago. A thunderbolt against Watford on opening day has apparently sparked another amazing season for the young English midfielder. His offensive contribution against Tottenham, could spark a win for the visitors.

I think that this is the game that starts another high scoring season for Harry Kane. As much as Roberto Martinez tells reporters that Stones isn’t affected by this ongoing transfer saga, a 21-year-old can only handle so much mentally and I think Kane will take advantage of any mental lapses Stones has during the match. Final score: Tottenham 2-1 Everton with Kane scoring a brace.

 

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About the author: Collin Carpio

 

I am currently a senior at the University of Missouri in the Journalism School. I have been an avid follower of Manchester United since 2006 and of course I support the Stars and Stripes. Due to my St. Louis high school allegiances, I am a big supporter of Brad Davis and Sporting KC in MLS.

 

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