Dimitar Berbatov explains why he would not sign for Spurs if he was still playing

Image: SpursWeb

Dimitar Berbatov believes that Tottenham face an extremely hard task identifying strikers who are good enough to improve the squad before convincing them to play second fiddle to Harry Kane.

With just days to go until the start of the new campaign, Spurs still have not yet managed to bring in a striker to serve as the England captain’s understudy.

Callum Wilson and Ollie Watkins, who were both rumoured to be on the club’s radar, have recently been snapped up by Newcastle and Aston Villa respectively.

Berbatov admitted that he would not come to Tottenham if he was still a player since he would know that his playing time would be limited with Kane ahead of him in the pecking order.

However, he insisted that the North Londoners needed to somehow bring in another striker to take some of the workload away from the 27-year-old.

The former Spurs striker told Football.London: “When you think about it, what kind of other striker do you want to bring in? When you have a striker like Harry Kane, he is number one. So how are you going to convince the other player that he is going to be number two?.

“If it’s me I’m not going to go there. I want to play football. So this is the problem in teams when you have a player like this, because Harry Kane is number one and he’s going to start.

“Even if he’s tired or has a knock here or there. ‘Harry are you ok?’ ‘Yes, I’m fine, I’m ready to play’. This is how he is, he always wants to play.

“The problem is that it can’t all fall on the shoulders of Harry Kane for sure. He’s going to have bad games like everyone.

“That’s when you need the players around him, or maybe another striker to come, and help him.

“It comes down also to what kind of formation Jose is going to play and that also plays a part in whether you need to buy more strikers.

“Honestly, you’ve got Harry Kane, Son, Dele Alli, Lucas, these are quality players who will bring you a lot of goals and assists as well.

“So who are you going to bring in to provide even more competition? How are you going to convince them? You’re going to have to tell them you’re going to rotate them sometimes.

“Off the top of my head, it’s tough to think of someone to do that.”

The Bulgarian also joked that he still has enough in his locker to be a good back up for Kane.

When asked if a Kane-Berbatov partnership will work well, he responded: “Maybe we’re a bit too similar in that he likes to drop back, get the ball and pass it to his team-mates.

“He’s not always upfront and he’s not selfish in that way, which I like a great deal and he scores goals. But I can be a good back-up at my age! I am pushing 40 though!”

Spurs Web Opinion

Rather than telling our potential striker targets that they are coming in to compete with Kane or to serve as his backup, I believe Jose Mourinho will try to convince them by insisting that they could play together with the England captain upfront. We did adopt a variation of a 4-4-2 in some matches after the restart, with Son playing up top as Kane’s partner, and that is something I expect us to try again next season. If we are to bring in a centre-forward like Milik, who is adept at holding up the ball, I can certainly see Kane working well with him.

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  1. I think we should buy someone on the premise the best person on the day plays. Surely that would encourage whoever we DO buy to improve to Kane’s standard, rather than just wait until Kane either gets too tired to play, or gets injured.

  2. Given that Harry Kane is essentially the only out and out striker in the first team squad I don’t see Berbatov’s logic overall. Yes Son, Dele, Lucas and Bergwijn have goals in them but none are natural strikers to act as direct cover for, or as a potential alternative to Kane. All the top premier sides have good alternative choice strikers with the seeming exception of Spurs. Man City have Jesus, Chelsea with Giroud and Abraham assuming Werner is first choice, Man Utd Ighalo and Greenwood (the latter is going to be an incredible forward as he matures) Arsenal of course have Lacazette and Martinelli. Spurs have been crying out for striking options for several years now, and thus far Levy has failed to deliver what is clearly needed. Given that the closest thing to an alternative striker for Tottenham is the up and coming Troy Parrot. However given also that Mourinho does not view him as ready for first team football in the Spurs team and has subsequently sent the young striker out on loan to Millwall FC for the up and coming season there really is no alternative choice here. I don’t buy into this notion that Tottenham cannot attract another striker just because of Kane, and lets face it there have numerous names linked over several seasons and there is no shortage in this window.The truth more accurately is that Levy wants a high quality striker for a low bargain price and that is frankly unlikely to happen.That does not mean there are not decent choices available and we continually miss out on these opportunities tome after time take Newcastle Utd just signing Callum Wilson from relegated Bournemouth as a steadfast example of the present tense, need I say more here?


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