José Mourinho is strongly opposed to Gareth Southgate’s plan to launch Harry Kane for England in the Nations League game with Denmark on Wednesday night and has expressed his concerns to the national setup.
The Tottenham manager had urged his England counterpart to handle Kane carefully during the international window, given his high workload in the season so far, and the situation became more sticky when the striker felt a problem with his thigh last week.
Southgate said Kane was uninjured but started to suffer from ‘muscle fatigue’ last Wednesday when he started training with England, having had Monday and Tuesday off work. The Football Federation sent him for a scan and there has been regular dialogue between their doctors and those of Spurs.
Kane was never going to play last Thursday against Wales, which England won 3-0 and due to lack of full training he was only used as a 66th minute substitute in the victory 2-1 in the League of Nations against Belgium on Sunday.
But now the club and the country are on a collision course, with Southgate keen to pitch Kane against Denmark. Spurs argue that the fact that Kane was sent in for a scan shows the FA are worried the player is wearing something, and they also know he will always reveal himself when asked to do so. The club partly blame the FA for the number of games Kane has already played this season. Before Belgium he had played 10 in 29 days – eight of them as a starter.
“Medically, there were conversations [with Spurs]Southgate said. “He started training on Wednesday, was a little unhappy with how he was feeling, so he worked with our medical team for the next two days. We scanned just to be sure, but it’s a muscle fatigue issue rather than an injury, so it just needed a little more confidence.
“He knew at that point he could push a little harder, but he just needed a little more confidence and so his week of training was not really suitable to start with. [against Belgium]. I think he will have gained more confidence from the spell he had [as a substitute] and so, all is well, we hope it will be ready to start on Wednesday.