Harry Kane: Is Tottenham and England striker genuinely struggling this season?

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Harry Kane already has 10 goals this season, but there's a feeling that he is not at his best.

He scored a single goal in the Premier League, which is significant because he had never scored in the top flight prior to Sunday's win at Newcastle.

After returning late to pre-season training after the collapse of a highly-discussed move from Manchester City, the 28-year old missed Spurs' opening game.

While league goals are not easy to find, he has been scoring a lot in Europe and England this season.

Kane stated after the strike against Newcastle that there was always much to talk about when he goes a few games without scoring.

"I am a man who loves to score in every game that I play. But I don’t panic when I don’t score in a few of those games.

"This was my 10th overall goal this season, and I hope to add more in the next games."

How is England and Tottenham's captain doing this season?

Is it possible that he has had a slow start?

Kane's start will depend on whether you judge him on the Premier League.

He had scored 10 goals in 15 games, both for country and club. He had scored only two more goals in the same season and played only one more game.

This is true even if you exclude England games and count Spurs.

You would need to go back to 2015-16 to see the last time he scored a goal in seven Premier League games.

This season, his goals were against Pacos Ferreira in Hungary, Andorra and Poland, Wolves (a Carabao cup XI), Mura, and finally Newcastle.

Kane's goals & games for Spurs and England by 20 October of each season (for Spurs or England) Season Games Goals 2021-22 13 10 2020-21 15 13 2019-20 15 3 2017-18 15 5 2016-17 15 6 2017-18 7 2 2015-16 163 2014-15 9 4 13 14 4 0 All seasons after Kane's last loan spell with Spurs

Liverpool's Mohamed Salah (10 goals) is the Premier League's only player who has scored more club goals this season than Kane (7 in all competitions).

Kane's start in the Premier League has been significantly lower than previous years. In his seven first games, he has only one goal and one assist.

He had assisted eight goals and scored six goals in his seven Premier League matches under Jose Mourinho.

He scored five to six goals in each of the four seasons prior.

Since 2014-15, his shots (17) as well as touches in the box (27), are the lowest at this stage. They also fall below his season averages for Spurs' top flight.

Kane managed to score three goals in three international games for England, before scoring in the draw with Hungary. He was then replaced by Kane after 76 minutes, despite it being clear that the Three Lions were looking for a late winner.

What's new this season?

Kane's drop has been deeper over the last year and he wasn't the Spurs' most advanced player by average position (based upon where his touches of ball came) in any of his five Premier League starts.

This term, he has touched the ball only 27 times in the opposing box of the league. That's less than 35 other players and the same level as Joelinton from Newcastle.

However, against Newcastle United, he was Spurs’ most advanced player. He also covered more distance (10.32km), and made more sprints (20) in this game than any other.

He scored the goal, beating the offside trap and dinking in. The video assistant referee awarded the goal after it was initially ruled out.

James McFadden, a former Scotland international, said on Match of the Day 2, "He's been in for a lot of critics for dropping deep and not getting into areas to score goals. But against Newcastle he displayed his intelligence.

"He was eager to be involved, and then he led the line. He was always moving."

Spurs are fifth on the table, despite back-to-back wins. However, they have scored only nine goals in eight games and are the only team with a negative goal difference in the top half.

Nuno Espirito Sante, the new Spurs manager, has a reputation of being more defensive-minded that some previous managers. Wolves averaged just 45 goals per season during his three Premier League seasons, even though he finished seventh twice.

This season, Spurs have managed fewer goals (1.13), passes (435), and shots (10.9) than ever before. They also concede more goals (1.5) as well as shots (15.4) per match than they did in their previous three seasons.

They rank fourth among Premier League teams in terms of chances created (61) and shots (87), in 2021-22.

Jonathan Woodgate, a former England defender, said to BBC Radio 5 Live that he managed Middlesbrough, Bournemouth and Bournemouth. "The story revolves around who is the best player, and Harry Kane by a long shot.

"Let's give him some opportunities." What can Kane eat? It's a shame. Please help him.

"They are the Premier League's team that has covered the most distance.

"Tottenham were supposed be challenging this season. It's amazing to see that we were the best team under Mauricio pochettino and are now the worst [for distance covered].

Sunday, West Ham hosts Spurs in the Premier League.

Kevin Nolan, Hammers coach, said that Harry was trying to leave the club and it is difficult to get back on.

"But, you have 10 other players who must help one of our most prolific strikers in England."

"Nuno's Wolves did not create many chances. Spurs has many people who must stand up and be heard.

They have changed from being a high-octane pressing group to what they are now, and that isn't going in Kane's favor. This is likely still a hangover from last summer and the manager search. Kane probably has the same hangover.

Does it seem inevitable that he will return to his best?

Kane can still be encouraged by the way his goalscoring improves with each season.

He scored 39 goals last term, despite only scoring 10 goals for country and club.

Kane scored six goals in 15 games during 2018-19, and finished the season with 27 goals, despite missing 16 games due to injury.

He has many goals to reach: he holds the Premier League, England and Spurs top scorer records, as well the goal of winning his first trophy.

After 55 more caps, he is 12 goals shy of Wayne Rooney's England scoring record (53), after which he scored 12 goals.

Kane could possibly reach that level by the end next winter of the World Cup Qatar.

His 228 goals for Spurs are 38 more than Jimmy Greaves, who was the club's all time top scorer.

Kane has scored 167 Premier League goals. He is still 93 short of Alan Shearer's record, but he should be in the top five this season. Frank Lampard was 177. Andrew Cole is third, with a score of 187, if Kane runs a prolific campaign.