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Report: Harry Kane is Ten Hag’s top target at United this summer

Here we go again.

AC Milan v Tottenham Hotspur - UEFA Champions League Photo by Giuseppe Maffia/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Two seasons ago, Harry Kane, aided by his brother/agent Charlie, did his damndest to engineer a transfer to Manchester City. This summer, it’s another Manchester club that is showing interest in Tottenham Hotspur’s homegrown superstar, and it may prove more difficult to keep ahold of him this time.

The Manchester Evening News is reporting today that Kane is the “top target” for Manchester United manager Erik Ten Hag in this upcoming summer’s transfer window. United are resurgent this season under Ten Hag, but one of their biggest weaknesses is the lack of a dominant center forward.

Kane would certainly fit that bill. He might turning 30 this year and potentially entering the twilight phase of his playing career, but Kane hasn’t scored fewer than 20 goals a season in a decade and is the best England player of his generation, possibly ever. All that, combined with this season’s Tottenham Hotspur team flaming out of every competition under Antonio Conte and the very real prospect of another major team rebuild coming makes this summer pivotal to Kane’s future.

Look, we all know Kane is desperate for trophies. It’s also becoming clear that the era of Kane and Son at Spurs is swiftly coming to a close. Tottenham are going to start a new project this summer with a new manager, and it’s probably time to sell off its older players to fully fund the overhaul. That very likely includes players such as Son Heung-Min, Hugo Lloris, and even Kane.

Now, it’s possible that whoever the new manager is (Pochettino?) is able to convince Kane to stick around for one final go-around and to cement Kane’s legacy as a one-club man and Tottenham’s best player of all time. That said, if Kane does want to move on from Spurs and also wants to try and catch Alan Shearer’s Premier League goals record, then his options are pretty much limited to United, Chelsea, Liverpool, and Newcastle. Bayern Munich has also been repeatedly reported to have interest in Kane.

It’s an open question as to whether Daniel Levy would sanction a hypothetical sale to United when he has flatly refused past offers from domestic rivals; Spurs haven’t sold a player directly to United since Dimitar Berbatov in 2008. But the situation on the ground is different now. Kane cut an extremely frustrated figure after Wednesday’s Champions League draw against AC Milan that bounced Spurs from the competition, and while there have been talks about a contract extension, nothing has been finalized.

Maybe Kane will decide he’s better off being Tottenham’s Francisco Totti than trophy-chasing as an adopted Mancunian, but I do wonder if a large enough bid comes in if Levy would be persuaded to let him go this time. I guess we’re going to find out pretty soon.