Harry Kane on Jose Mourinho Influence: 'It's Good to Experience New Things'

Matt JonesFeatured ColumnistDecember 17, 2019

Tottenham Hotspur's Portuguese head coach Jose Mourinho (L) interacts with Tottenham Hotspur's English striker Harry Kane during the English Premier League football match between West Ham United and Tottenham Hotspur at The London Stadium, in east London on November 23, 2019. (Photo by Adrian DENNIS / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or 'live' services. Online in-match use limited to 120 images. An additional 40 images may be used in extra time. No video emulation. Social media in-match use limited to 120 images. An additional 40 images may be used in extra time. No use in betting publications, games or single club/league/player publications. /  (Photo by ADRIAN DENNIS/AFP via Getty Images)

Tottenham Hotspur's star striker Harry Kane has said he is expecting Jose Mourinho's influence to help him improve as a player.

Mourinho has enjoyed a strong start to his career as Spurs boss, with their last-gasp 2-1 win at Wolverhampton Wanderers last time out moving them up to fifth place in the Premier League table, just three points behind Chelsea a spot above.

Kane made huge strides under the guidance of former boss Mauricio Pochettino, with the Argentinian helping the striker go from a capricious academy prospect into one of the standout centre-forwards in world football.

Per Matt Davies of Sky Sports, Kane said he's eager to see what facets Mourinho can add to his game:

"I got on very well with Poch and I respect Poch very, very, very much. But Mourinho's got his own style, his own way of doing things. For me, it is about learning that way.

"My top-level career has only been with one manager, so for me it's good to experience new things, see how different managers work. Mourinho's one of the highest level managers in our sport, so I can only learn from him."

Kane has already grabbed 15 goals in all competitions for Tottenham this term, with five of those coming since Mourinho took charge in north London.

On Sunday, Spurs needed Jan Vertonghen to step up with a late winner at Wolves, as Lucas Moura saw his early strike cancelled out by Adama Traore's equaliser:

Jack Pitt-Brooke of The Athletic picked up on the influence of Mourinho in what was a dogged display from his Spurs side:

Jack Pitt-Brooke @JackPittBrooke

I asked Mourinho afterwards why they were so deep, he said it was not on purpose: "The problem is not my defence, it is the team. My front 3 pressed them high at the start of the game. But against these guys, it’s impossible to do all the time. You cannot do it for 90 minutes."

Throughout his career, the Portuguese manager has typically got the best from his sides when he's had an elite target man leading the line. With that in mind, it was always going to be intriguing to see how Mourinho and Kane worked together.

So far, the signs have been positive. Kane has continued to perform to the same standards he did under Pochettino, with his goalscoring potency, link play and ability to create chances giving Spurs an exceptional outlet at the top end of the field.

Per Dan Kilpatrick of the Evening Standard, although Mourinho is renowned for his defensive qualities as a coach, he appears to have liberated some of the attacking class in the Tottenham ranks:

Dan Kilpatrick @Dan_KP

#thfc Son, Kane & Alli have all scored great individuals goals this week. If nothing else, Mourinho has got the forward players confident enough to express themselves and try things.

Kane has previously spoken of how important he feels it is to forge a bond with the new coach:

ITV Football @itvfootball

Kane is keen to build a successful relationship with Jose Mourinho πŸ™Œ Could this be a key factor in @HKane staying at @SpursOfficial for the long-term? πŸ€” https://t.co/essiAADeKW

The England captain is now entering an intriguing phase of his career. He's regularly picked up injuries and as such, he's been robbed of some of the natural dynamism he had when first breaking on to the scene.Β 

Already it appears Kane is adapting his game as a result, with the Spurs No. 10 often dropping into deeper positions to pick up the ball. Mourinho will be a crucial figure in ensuring that process remains streamlined for the Tottenham man in years to come.