PO­CHET­TINO BACKS SON TO DELIVER

Spurs boss be­lieves South Korea star will step up in Kane’s ab­sence

New Straits Times - - Sport -

MAURI­CIO Po­chet­tino says Son He­ung-Min has proved he can re­place the in­jured Harry Kane af­ter the Tot­ten­ham for­ward’s hat-trick si­lenced Mill­wall’s racist taunts.

He­ung-Min found him­self thrust into the spot­light at White Hart Lane on Sun­day as he scored his first goals since Jan­uary in Tot­ten­ham’s 6-0 FA Cup quar­ter-fi­nal thrash­ing of thirdtier Mill­wall.

The South Korea star’s goal blitz was the per­fect re­sponse to a sec­tion of the Mill­wall sup­port who aimed un­savoury chants at him in the first half.

They were heard singing “dvd” and “three for a fiver” in ref­er­ence to the stereo­type of Asian mar­ket traders sell­ing boot­leg copies of films.

He­ung-Min’s goals were also well-timed for Tot­ten­ham boss Po­chet­tino, who fears Kane could be side­lined with an an­kle in­jury for the rest of the sea­son.

Kane left the Lane on crutches with his foot in a pro­tec­tive boot and Po­chet­tino fears it is a sim­i­lar in­jury to the one that kept the Eng­land striker out for seven weeks ear­lier this term.

A re­peat would leave He­ung­Min and Vin­cent Janssen, who also scored against Mill­wall, as Po­chet­tino’s main op­tions for the cen­tral striker’s role.

“Of course I’m sad about Harry’s in­jury but we have to find a so­lu­tion,” Po­chet­tino said.

“Harry is one of the best strik­ers in Eng­land but we can’t cry. It’s never an ex­cuse if we don’t achieve our aims with­out Harry.

“When play­ers don’t play of­ten they have to be ready to show their qual­ity. It’s about the team per­for­mance, with dif­fer­ent names and play­ers.

“Son can play like a striker. If you re­mem­ber one of our best per­for­mances was against Man City here when he was a striker when Harry was in­jured.”

Kane has scored 24 times this sea­son to un­der­line his emer­gence as one of Europe’s top strik­ers and late yes­ter­day’s scan on the in­jury would have ma­jor im­pli­ca­tions for Tot­ten­ham’s sea­son.

“He twisted his an­kle in the same way as be­fore,” Po­chet­tino said. “It’s dif­fi­cult. I looks a sim­i­lar sit­u­a­tion to his in­jury against Sun­der­land.

“When you lose a player like Harry you will miss him, so it’s im­por­tant the play­ers that re­placed him scored some goals. Now we need them.”

Mill­wall’s bid to claim a fourth Pre­mier League scalp in the FA Cup this sea­son never got started as they were de­mol­ished to such an ex­tent that a 10-goal win wouldn’t have flat­tered Spurs.

AFP PIC

Mill­wall’s Shaun Wil­liams (left) and Tot­ten­ham Hot­spur’s Son He­ung-Min tus­sle for the ball at White Hart Lane on Sun­day. Tot­ten­ham won 6-0.

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