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  • Writer's pictureBy Yann Tear at Old Trafford

Ex Spurs man gets all the vindication he needed in choice of club - without even trying



It would be stretching it to say he dodged a bullet, because by all accounts, Man United's attempts to lure him from Spurs last season were more fanciful than credible. But Harry Kane got that reassurance in midweek anyway.


We all know that leaving the club he had graced so brilliantly over the years - accumulating a club record number of goals - was going to be all about pursuit of the trophies which eluded him in north London. On the evidence served up by United against the club he joined in the summer, he'd have been wasting his time in the north west.


Kane has taken to life in the Bundesliga in a big way and is wracking up goals by the shed-load to aid Bayern Munich's annual procession towards the title. The Bavarians are not having things their own way just yet, domestically, but you know it is odds-on they will prevail again.


However, one thing will have been made abundantly clear to the England striker at Old Trafford on Tuesday night and that is that he has a better chance of silverware after his switch to the German champions than if he had been lured to England's most successful club. Theirs is a project that has been seemingly set to slow-fade.


United - who were interested in Kane but ultimately put off by the outlay it would have required - were frankly pitiful and bowed out of this season's Champions League with barely a whimper.


Apart from a brief spell of overdue front-foot pressing at the start of the second half, they barely raised a puff of wind when they needed to kick up a storm to unsettle the calm and dominant visitors.


Kane, like his team-mates, seemed to play within himself. After all, Bayern had already qualified for next year's knock-outs. He played in a more withdrawn position to make himself available to team-mates, and without having to do very much, managed to shine.


He it was who applied the typically deft touch inside the United penalty area which set up Kingsley Coman for the game's only goal 20 minutes from time.


That strike was always likely to be enough. The hosts did not threaten and the occasion was a travesty of the great European nights which have been a feature of this crumbling old stadium down the years.


United finished bottom of a very negotiable group and will not even be in the Europa League. Erik ten Hag's men needed to win to stand a chance of going through, but their timid display was very reminscent of Spurs' own cowed performance in last year's round of 16 clash with AC Milan.


Trailing by a goal from the first leg, Spurs were inexplicably diffident in the return and the negative mindset instilled by then-boss Antonio Conte (which led to a supine 0-0 draw) no doubt provided the final proof that the Italian was not a good fit at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.


Spurs visit Old Trafford on January 14 when they will be aiming to complete a rare double over the beleaguered Red Devils. If Angeball is anywhere near its usual level - as it was against Newcastle on Sunday - Tottenham will be capable of blowing United away, just as they did in north London in the early weeks of the season.


They will not have Kane's miraculous goal count to help them, but then Bayern did not need that this time either. It was a game which tended to confirm all the conclusions we have already come to this season about Kane, Spurs and United.




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