Tottenham Hotspur star Harry Kane said an “honest conversation” with chairman Daniel Levy had paved the way for an encouraging 2-2 draw with Manchester United that helped stem a rising tide of discontent among the club’s supporters.
An open revolt by Spurs fans intensified following last weekend’s humiliating 6-1 loss away to Newcastle, with the hosts scoring five times during the opening 21 minutes of a defeat that cost interim head coach Cristian Stellini his job.
Levy consulted Spurs’ players committee, understood to comprise captain Hugo Lloris, Eric Dier, Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg and Kane.
Stellini had only been in charge for four games since Spurs parted company with former boss Antonio Conte, who publicly labelled his squad as “selfish players” after they squandered a 3-1 lead to draw 3-3 at bottom-of-the-table Southampton last month.
There was far more resilience on show at home to United on Thursday and Kane, speaking afterwards, said: “The chairman asked for a meeting. Obviously I won’t go into what was said but I think it was important (for him) to understand where the players’ heads were at in that moment.
“Obviously coming off the back of that (Newcastle) result and it wasn’t just that result, it had been building up since the international break when we conceded the two goals against Southampton.”
Tottenham head into this weekend’s match away to Liverpool still in fifth place but six points behind Manchester United having played two games more than their fourth-placed rivals.
“It was an honest conversation of where everyone is at and what we need to try to do to give us the best possible chance to finish the season with something,” Kane added of the discussions with Levy.
“We’re still fighting for fourth place but if it’s not fourth we’ll try to finish fifth or sixth, as high up as we can.”
Thursday’s draw was a particularly heartening display by Spurs given they fell 2-0 behind to United following goals by Jadon Sancho and Marcus Rashford.
But Ryan Mason, in his second spell as Spurs caretaker boss despite being just 31-years-old, retained his composure at the interval before Pedro Porro and Son Heung-min drew the north London side level in the second half.
“It was quite calm,” recalled Kane. “Ryan said not to try to get back in the game in the first five minutes of the second half.
“He said, ‘there’s another 45 minutes, be compact, be ready to hurt them like we did in the first half but now we have to be more clinical’.”
Tottenham’s players reimbursed fans who made the long journey from London to northeast side Newcastle, with Kane saying: “We know it wasn’t going to magically change their feelings or make the result any better but it was still something as a group we wanted to do to try to show we’re all together in this moment.”
Kane was cheered by both sets of supporters on Thursday, with United fans chanting they would see him in June amid speculation over the future of the England captain—yet to win a major domestic honour—with just 14 months left on his Spurs contract.
“I heard what they were saying but I’m just focused on this team and trying to finish strongly,” Kane said.
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