One day Harry Kane is going to break someone’s neck.
Pundits such as Jermaine Jenas will come out en masse and defend him. It will be the usual “it was an unfortunate accident” and “he is just not that sort of player”.
But the reality is it would not be an unfortunate accident, and he is exactly that sort of player.
Harry Kane has a history of taking players out in the air when they are jumping and challenging for the ball.
His modus operandi is always the same. Look at the player, wait for them to jump, then lean into them whilst he is still n the ground. This is a regular tactic of his.
He is making no attempt to win the ball in any of these challenges. Each one is a deliberate act to take out an opponent in the air.
In rugby, if you make contact with a player in the air whilst your feet are on the ground, it is your duty to ensure that they return to terraferma safely.
If you fail to do so, it is a yellow card. A sin bin. If they end up on their neck, it is a red card.
That is how dangerous rugby sees challenging someone in the air and landing on their neck. And they are right to do so.
Landing on your neck can cause serious injury. Your spine and neck is so fragile and any injury can lead to a life changing disability. I know this because my old man damaged his spine 15 years ago (scuba diving accident) and it has changed his life forever.
I understand football is a contact game, and players challenge each other in the air all the time. Accidents happen.
But what Harry Kane is doing will not lead to an accidental injury. It will be a deliberate act.
He is literally smashing into opponents whilst they are in the air. He is not himself challenging for the ball. And he is showing no regard for his opponents.
Referees turn a blind eye to it, as do the media. It reminds me of the way Alan Shearer was allowed to stomp and elbow his way around the Premier League in the 90s with no comeuppance. No criticism.
The protection of the England captain by referees and the media is real.
Against Arsenal he got away with another career ending challenge.
On this occasion Gabriel was not in the air. But it was the same tactic from Kane.
No intention to win the ball. Eyes only on the player. Leading with the elbow, neck high.
It is violent conduct. It is not debatable. But Michael Oliver decided it was not even a free kick. VAR did not look at it. MOTD failed to discuss it. And the Premier League are continually taking down any video that shows it.
The way Gabriel’s neck is thrown back is sickening. He is lucky to have not suffered whiplash.
At the weekend in the rugby, an Italian ball carrier was sin banned for leading with the forearm. No complains from anyone on the pitch.
But in football, it seems it is ok to lead with the forearm as long as your name is Harry Kane.
One day Harry Kane is going to break someone’s neck. And those defending him loudly will also be those that sit in silence whilst he continues to commit neck breaking challenges.
Kane is nasty, he is snide, and he is dangerous.