Opinion: Harry Kane’s succession – Troy Parrott vs Dane Scarlett

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Harry Kane
(Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)

Tottenham sent both Dane Scarlett and Troy Parrott away on loan this summer, with the aim of giving both these young starlets a chance to impress in the lower leagues.

Parrott joined Championship side Preston-North End, whilst Scarlett joined League One outfit Portsmouth in the player’s first loan move away from Spurs. 

Both players have started the season getting plenty of minutes for their clubs, with Parrott making 10 starts for Preston, and Scarlett making 6 starts for Portsmouth, with a further 3 coming from the bench. 

It would be unfair for me to compare the two strikers based on their performances this season alone, as they are playing in different leagues against a different standard of competition.

Instead, I am going to compare Dane Scarlett’s start in League One this season with Troy Parrott’s season at MK Dons last season, where he too played in League One, at a side similar in stature to Portsmouth. 

Firstly, let’s take a look at Scarlett’s stats so far this season. He has been impressive for Pompey so far, scoring 3 goals in his 9 appearances for them in the league (SofaScore).

He is averaging a goal every 166 minutes, with a goal conversion rate of 20%, essentially scoring once every 5 shots for Portsmouth. 

If we look at the same stats from Troy Parrott last season, we indeed see a very different outlook. Of his 43 league appearances for MK Dons last season (36 starts), Parrott managed 9 goals, averaging a goal every 354 minutes with a goal conversion rate of just 9%, meaning he is scoring a tad less than 1 shot every 10 (SofaScore).

Now it is somewhat unfair to compare Troy’s stats over the whole season compared to Dane’s opening nine games, and while that doesn’t give us the whole picture, it certainly provides an interesting reference point. 

Using simple math, if Dane continues scoring at this rate and plays 45 games this season (2 more appearances than Parrott last season) then his goal tally by the end of the season should reach 15.

Obviously, there are plenty of variables not taken into account here, but it does show that if Dane Scarlett carries on in this vein of form, he could easily surpass Parrott’s goal tally for last season, and perhaps cement himself as Spurs’ natural successor to Harry Kane in coming seasons. 

Interestingly, during the first loan spell of his career, at League One side Leyton Orient during the 2010/11 season, Harry Kane managed 5 goals in 18 appearances, which using the same math, means he could have ended that season with 13 goals in 45 appearances, had he made that many (TransferMarkt).

It is obviously unclear at this point whether Scarlett will emulate my estimations for his season, but I would estimate that they are not at this point unlikely. 

Troy Parrott is yet to get off the mark for Preston this season, a stat that I’m sure has not got unnoticed by the Tottenham hierarchy. 

If we now look at their stats for Spurs at senior level, Troy has featured just 4 times for the senior team, his last appearance coming in Spurs’ fifth-round FA Cup defeat to Norwich in 2020, and is yet to register a goal for the side. 

Scarlett on the other hand has registered 10 senior appearances for Spurs, bagging an assist against Wolfsberger in the 2020/21 Europa League, which incidentally was also his last appearance for the side.

Who do you think has the best chance of being Tottenham’s next Harry Kane?

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