Former top-flight striker Frank McAvennie has urged Antonio Conte to drop Harry Kane at Tottenham Hotspur if he is not up to his best.
The ex-marksman suggested that Son Heung-min unfairly shoulders the brunt of the blame for Spurs’ attacking woes.
The South Korean forward has only scored three Premier League goals this season, which all came in the only league fixture he hasn’t started in the current campaign.
Son has been consistently replaced, while Kane has completed the full game in all but one of his 15 top-flight outings.
After last week’s Carabao Cup exit, Conte admitted that the striker felt “very, very tired” and had actually withdrawn from a training session earlier in the week.
However, McAvennie has now said that the Italian coach shouldn’t be afraid to take his captain out of the starting lineup if he isn’t perfroming – just as he did with with Son.
He told Football Insider: “It is a shame Son gets dropped but Harry Kane never does.
“Sometimes even the great players need to be taken off. I think Son got the blame with everything.
“This new manager started like a house on fire and now all of a sudden it is not going right. Something is not right there. They are supposed to be one of the top teams, I do not get it.”
TIF Thoughts on McAvennie’s comments…
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While the ex-Celtic and West Ham United striker does raise a good point that everyone needs a rest, Conte was in a difficult position when it came to resting Kane against Nottingham Forest in the cup.
Having just returned from injury himself, Richarlison was the only senior option to replace Kane in the game.
The manager also fielded a strong XI with perhaps a keen eye to go all the way in the competition, so it does seem as though Conte only wants to leave Kane out if absolutely necessary.
England’s skipper has already scored 12 times in 15 league games this season and is a pivotal figure, but given the number of games that the club will have to contend with after Christmas, McAvennie may finally get his wish and Kane could receive a valuable rest.