Jermaine Pennant has joked that Antonio Conte could play Harry Kane as a defensive midfielder to accommodate Richarlison in the starting eleven, given how deep the England captain has been dropping to pick up the ball.

Over the last couple of years, Kane has come under a fair bit of criticism from some pundits and fans for dropping deep to pick up the ball when he plays for the Three Lions.

(Photo by Markus Gilliar – GES Sportfoto/Getty Images)

Even though the striker has shown how effective he can be as a playmaker during this World Cup, with three assists to his name in the competition so far, some have continued to question why he does not spend more time in and around the box (The Sun).

In contrast, Richarlison, who has primarily been used in the wide areas by Conte this season, has impressed as an out-and-out centre-forward for Brazil. 

Not only has the 25-year-old led the line impressively for the Selecao, but he has also found the back of the net on three occasions in Qatar so far.

Pennant believes that Conte should consider playing Kane as a number ten behind Richarlison when the Premier League season resumes.

When asked about the possibility of the Brazilian dropping to the bench when he returns to Spurs, the former Liverpool winger told talkSPORT: “No, he’s not going to be happy. Put Richarlison there (up top) and then put Kane defensive-midfield because he drops that deep. 

“When he is playing for Spurs, he drops that deep to get the ball, so you might as well put him in midfield or as a number ten and see how it works.”

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The only issue with playing Kane as ten in behind Richarlison is that it would require Conte to adopt a back four, which I do not see the Italian doing. 

Otherwise, the only way Kane and Richarlison could both play centrally is if Conte uses a 3-5-2 but that is also unlikely as it would involve dropping both Kulusevski and Son.

I do think that Conte would be open to resting Kane more often in the second half of the season, now that the former Everton man has proved his chops as a number nine.

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