EPL

Conte pushing 'fantastic' Kane to be best striker in the world

By Sports Desk April 07, 2022

Tottenham head coach Antonio Conte insists he will keep pushing the "fantastic" Harry Kane to improve and be the best striker in the world.

Kane claimed March's Premier League Player of the Month award after playing a direct role in half of his side's goals last month, finding the net four times and recording two assists.

The England international followed that up with another assist in the 5-1 rout of Newcastle United last time out, the 20th Premier League goal he has created in his last 63 appearances, as many as he managed in his first 211 outings in the competition.

The Spurs talisman also moved level with Bobby Charlton in last month's internationals, with Kane just four away from Wayne Rooney's record 53 goals for England.

Conte reiterated his praise for Kane ahead of a trip to Aston Villa on Saturday as he discussed the importance of the 28-year-old, who he feels can still develop.

"I think he deserves an important position in the world of football," Conte said of his star striker at a pre-match news conference on Thursday.

"I think Harry also he has the right age to show that he can be one of the best, best in the world and in history. He's already in history because he's scored a lot of goals for the club and the national team. He's of the right age to consolidate this and be one of the best.

"He's not typical in that he's a number nine and number 10. We try to exploit this characteristic.

"We are talking about a fantastic player. It's very difficult to improve him but we're trying to work and push him to the top ambition, to be the best striker."

Spurs sit fourth in the league – above Arsenal on goal difference but Mikel Arteta's side have played a game fewer than their north London rivals – and Conte believes his side are developing after spending more time working with them.

"I've had more days to work with the team and this is important," he added. "Don't forget I came in in November and didn't have the same time as other managers with pre-season and the players you wanted to sign in the summer.

"It's important for me to have more time to spend with my team to improve the physical and technical aspects."

Matt Doherty is one of those to improve under Conte, with the wing-back on target against Newcastle as eight Spurs players recorded either a goal or an assist in a single Premier League game for just the second time, and the Italian hailed the former Wolves man.

"Matthew is the typical player that is showing big improvement," he continued. "If you remember at the start he didn't play a lot with me because at that moment I think he didn't deserve to play.

"Then he worked very hard. He is a really good guy and in every training session you see the desire and the will to improve himself.

"He has a great mentality, many times when players don't play a lot they go down mentally. Instead he has shown me to be strong and shown me 'I do what you want, I am going to improve and when I am ready I want to play'.

"He has shown me that not with talking, but with attitude and behaviour. He is playing very well and with great confidence and I am very happy for him. It's a good example for everyone."

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