Tottenham boss Nuno Espirito Santo says Harry Kane will join the squad when he is ready after missing the 1-0 win over Manchester City on Sunday.
Kane was not involved as Spurs beat the reigning champions 1-0 thanks to Son Heung-min’s second-half goal, putting on a show to suggest they may be okay even if their star striker gets his wish to leave.
The future of Kane, who is keen on a move to City, has been the major talking point of the summer and his late return to training meant that he was not included in the matchday squad for Spurs’ Premier League opener.
It is understood Kane was in the stadium to watch the game and he will have been left in no doubt how the fans feel about the situation following a loud rendition of “are you watching Harry Kane?”.
Kane trained on Sunday morning and Nuno said: “Harry, like (new signings) Bryan (Gil), Cristian Romero, they joined us later.
“For Cristian and Bryan it was very important to be here today. To feel the atmosphere and be in the stadium and be in the hotel, attending the meeting, but knowing they don’t have too many sessions with us.
“Harry worked this morning, he is preparing himself and when he is ready he will join the group and help the team.”
Nuno added on Sky Sports when asked about the fans’ chants: “Look, Harry Kane is one of the best players in the world, honestly.
“We are very lucky to have him. He has to get ready and help the team. We still have to go to Portugal (to play Pacos de Ferreira in the Europa Conference League play-offs) then we think about Wolves.”
While Kane was late in reporting back for pre-season training, his fellow forward Son was busy signing a new contract and endeared himself to the Tottenham fans yet further by scoring a 55th-minute winner.
The South Korean loves playing against City – this was the seventh time he has scored against them and the fourth in four games in north London.
Son earned the plaudits, but it was the performance of Japhet Tanganga that was most impressive as he kept Raheem Sterling and Jack Grealish largely quiet.
Nuno added: “All the team did very well, but Japhet was huge today. He faced too many one-v-ones today against fantastic players and he dealt fantastic with the situation.
“There’s no perfection, we still have a long way to go to be perfect and probably we will never achieve it, but I’m really proud of the way the players worked and really thankful for the support of the fans.
“It was huge the way they helped the team until the final minute, helping the boys, and we are very thankful for it.”
With this game out of the way, City may well now intensify their pursuit of Kane, which has so far amounted to an opening £100million bid – some way off what Spurs want to even get to the negotiating table.
Their need for a striker was obvious in north London as they missed several chances, but Pep Guardiola, who last week revealed he wants to sign Kane, was not prepared to bite this time when asked if this performance showed why they need the Spurs man.
“We are the same people as last season, Sergio (Aguero) has gone unfortunately but we only had him for seven games,” he said.
“We are the same people. We won the Premier League and we made very good things. It is a tough rival, we did everything to win.
“It is the same people as last season and we scored loads of goals. It has happened, we were there, we arrived many times and today we could not score and it is the same mystery. We are good enough to score a goal.”