Where does Harry Kane's future lie?
Background Image: Paddy Briggs CC BY-SA 3.0
Harry Kane is probably England's biggest striking talent since the emergence of Alan Shearer and Wayne Rooney all those years ago. He has often said he would love to be a one-club man, but will that loyalty continue if Spurs aren't able to win a trophy anytime soon?
The 25-year-old burst onto the scene in the 2014-15 season, scoring and assisting a combined 36 goals. Since then, Kane hasn't looked back - becoming an England regular while remaining an irreplaceable part of Tottenham's puzzle.
Although Spurs have arguably the most deadly hitman in Europe along with a much sought-after manager, the Lilywhites have consistently fallen short of expectations. Mauricio Pochettino has persistently argued Spurs are punching above their weight, but what he can't deny is that he has a set of quality players at his disposal.
The Londoners rarely put in a bad performance against top-six opposition. It's in matches they are expected to win where Spurs tend to choke up. Six of Tottenham's 13 losses came from teams outside the top six... Two of those came in the last three games of the season against AFC Bournemouth and West Ham United.
Clearly, the problem lies in the mind and not the tools. Even with their league troubles, Spurs have managed to progress through to the Champions League final in Madrid. Whether or not Kane will feature is still uncertain. Pochettino recently said the forward is in the last stages of recovery but it would likely come down to the wire.
In an effort to turn Tottenham into the club they always had the potential to be, Chairman Daniel Levy funded a new stadium for the Lilywhites. There's no doubt he'd want to start his first full season at his new home as European Champions.
If he features, this will be Kane's chance to cement his place as a Tottenham legend. It will no doubt reaffirm his commitment to the club and to the vision Pochettino is trying to build. If they lose, however, doubts will start to creep in and he may start to consider just what legacy, if any, he will leave behind if he remains in London.
The last two transfer windows have seen Tottenham's Argentine manager go unfunded, that is unlikely to change drastically in the near future. The cost of Spurs' new stadium rose to over £1billion, putting them £300million over their expected budget. Vast amounts of money probably won't be available to invest into the squad.
Arsenal, who had immense success in the early 2000s, suffered from the construction of the Emirates and have only just started to flex their financial muscle again. Arsene Wenger had repeatedly said the stadium had rendered the Gunners unable to compete in the transfer market, putting them at a disadvantage for almost a decade.
Kane will no doubt have heard these whispers as well. If England's #9 does decide to leave there will be no shortage of suitors. Real Madrid have been heavily touted as a potential destination in the past.
Although Zinedine Zidane favours Karim Benzema, the Frenchman is 31-years-old and Madrid chiefs will be on the prowl for a potential long-term replacement. Kane may not have the marketable appeal of a Cristiano Ronaldo but he will definitely bring the X-factor that disappeared when the Portuguese did.
Whether or not Kane leaves will likely depend on the assurances given by Levy over the ambitions of the club. For the time being, Kane seems happy but if Spurs become complacent, they may very well end up losing their biggest asset.