Originally posted on Goonersphere

It would seem that the media got a little carried away with our defeat at the hands of our dear neighbours. Not only did they get to see us being taught a lesson by our rivals but they also got to see their next pedestal-warmer.

Harry Kane.

Ugly Kane

I may be criticised for raining on Kane’s parade but am I the only one who feels that he hasn’t entirely proved himself yet? He hasn’t played one full season in the top-flight and has yet to ply his trade against the cream of Europe  – yet articles such as this huge pile of hyperbole

lend credence to the theory that journalists enjoy the ending to a game of Jenga rather than the taking part.

Talking of articles that are written solely to infuriate and include nothing other than frothing – take a gander at respected pundit Danny Murphy’s comments

This is another domino in a long line of toppled pieces. The previous fallen hero? Look no further than the current incumbent of the title ‘England’s Saviour’ as it is one of his team mates. Andros Townsend.

Only last year, hacks were clamouring for Andros to be labelled as England’s one true talent as he had a knack for going past a player. The reason Townsend raised his profile so much is that his style was in direct contrast to the national side. Not since the days of Glenn Hoddle in France ’98 have we had an England side with even the remotest of swaggers in their game. Townsend racing past a prone full-back was a thrilling sight as NO-ONE had done it in an England jersey for so long.

Poor Andros has fallen to earth with a crash and now lives solely on the goal-bonuses he receives for scoring spot-kicks. Other than that he seems to be treading along a path well-worn by Aaron Lennon.

It is not solely national sides that enjoy a dash of pedestal-smashing. Club sides all over Europe all have a player that is ‘The Next Big Thing’. These labels are so heavy a burden that they sometimes are responsible for the crushing death of a career. For every Robbie Fowler you have a Neil Mellor. Ditto for Joe Cole and Ravel Morrison.  Either way, with media adulation comes a fierce spotlight that with extended exposure comes the inevitable fallout.

As Gooners, we’ve seen a long line of starlets that had the shelf-life of a DairyLea CheeseSlice. Francis Jeffers. Quincy-Owusu-Obeyie. Jay-Emanuel-Thomas. Graham Barrett. Sanchez Watt. Tomas Danilevicius? The graveyard for Wunderkinds careers is vast and ever-growing. A living can be forged as a journeyman of the lower-leagues and perchance a few seasons sharing the limelight in the Premiership with a promoted team willing to take a gamble on a former child prodigy can be achieved. The dream however, is still dashed.

Arsenal youth team celebrate Arsenal-yth-2000

For luminaries of their chosen field to hang an albatross of gargantuan weight around a player of undoubted promise – as these journalists have done with Harry Kane – is a potential death knell and at the very least shoddy, ill-advised scrawling. Kane has bagged 22 goals this season in 34 appearances. On the face of things, that is exemplary. What it doesn’t mention is that his stats for the season are severely bloated by scoring seven in seven in Tottenham’s Europa League campaign – facing off against such worthy adversaries as FC QuestionMark of lower Slovenia and Sporting Club de Whothefuckareya no doubt do his figures the world of good. His League stats though are still International class, he has 12 in 20 League apps.

For him to be heralded as the healer of England’s ills is preposterous. There is no doubt in my mind that he deserves an England chance – but what of Charlie Austin? Wasn’t he the flavour of the month in December? Surely if they are England-class then form is temporary? What about a player that bagged 15 goals in the same amount of time? In a far more limited side? That would surely warrant the fiercest of spotlights? Well, that player was Michael Ricketts.


My point is that haste is not the best tactic when judging a player. Danny Murphy has simply seen a wagon speeding by in his peripheral vision and realised that it was travelling quicker than his own pedestrian career. Hence him jumping on it and attempting to take the reins and thus being responsible for the potential mardi gras if Kane does fulfill his potential.

Let us see if Kane continues what is currently a purple patch. Let us see if Ross Barkley can find his best position. Let us hope that The Ox can find consistency to match his endeavour and skill. Let’s not hinder them as they attempt to take off. Unless Kane stays at spurs. Then hinder away.

By @JokmanAFC