In an opening weekend showdown between Harry Kane’s suitor and the hometown club desperately trying to keep him, Tottenham shocked defending Premier League champion Manchester City with a 1–0 win on Sunday.
Kane reportedly sat out Sunday’s match due to fitness concerns, but it immediately read as a sign that his transfer saga was only continuing since requesting a move at the end of last season. But Spurs gave their talisman a reason to reconsider.
Buoyed by a capacity crowd of more than 60,000 fans, chants of “Are you watching, Harry Kane?” rang out in north London. Tottenham employed a cautious, yet organized approach in Nuno Espírito Santo’s first competitive match as Spurs manager. The former Wolves manager made quite the impression, invigorating a side that has made only two purchases this summer while letting four squad players leave.
Spurs got their break in the 55th minute from none other than Son Heung-min, the club’s other attacking star who was praised for his commitment to the side after signing a four-year contract at the end of July.
At the end of a picture-perfect counter attack, Son put the ball on his left, cut inside along the edge of the 18-yard box and sent a low, curling shot that beat Ederson for what ended up being the match-winner. It was the South Korean international’s seventh career goal against City.
Despite its newly signed British-record transfer ($139 million) in Jack Grealish starting ahead of a recovering Kevin De Bruyne, City showed exactly what it was missing at the striker position following the departure of Sergio Agüero. The Premier League champions started a false No. 9 in Ferran Torres only to hardly challenge Spurs despite 18 shots (four on target).
And for the first time in his career, manager Pep Guardiola has lost four straight away games to a single team, according to Squawka. Shut out for only the second time in a Premier League match in 2021, City’s need for a prolific striker like Kane was made clear. However, Spurs may have made their best case yet for the reigning Golden Boot winner to stay.
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