Tottenham Hotspur are struggling for options up front following the injury suffered by Harry Kane, and Spurs legend Gary Mabbutt has told Love Sport Radio that Jose Mourinho should consider a return for Rangers striker Jermain Defoe.
England captain Kane pulled up in the 1-0 defeat to Southampton, clutching his hamstring. Scans showed after the match that he had suffered a tear, keeping him sidelined until April at the earliest. Euro 2020 starts in June.
Spurs lost 1-0 to Liverpool on Saturday evening as Mourinho played with Lucas Moura up front – indeed, the Portuguese manager had little other option. The north Londoners have been linked with Krzysztof Piatek of AC Milan.
But former Spurs man Mabbutt reckons his old team should look at a familiar face to replace Kane, in veteran striker Defoe who is currently playing second fiddle to Colombian striker Alfredo Morelos at Rangers under Steven Gerrard.
“You can’t just go in to a panic buy just because your star player is going to be out for two or three months, because when that player comes back the competition is going to be even greater. The player coming in may not want that,” Mabbutt said.
“Ideally you’d bring back in Jermaine Defoe on loan just to cover that area.”
TBR’s view – Is Defoe the right move?
Mabbutt makes a fair point when stating that Spurs cannot sign a player like Danny Ings, given that Kane will return to the starting line-up when fit – leaving Ings or another top-class striker to feed off scraps.
Spurs need a striker that is still very good in front of goal, but one that is happy to play back-up to Kane. Poland international Piatek, who has been heavily linked with a move, could be the answer.
But if a move for Piatek does fail, Defoe could be an option until the end of the season. The only issue, though, is that Defoe – who played 361 times for Spurs before leaving in 2014 – is on loan at Rangers from AFC Bournemouth.
Another issue is that Defoe is loving his time in Scotland, and Gerrard desperately wants him. Widely expected to keep him beyond the summer when his loan expires, Gerrard has been quoted as describing Defoe as a “superstar”, as per the Herald.