The 2020/21 season has certainly been a roller coaster. There have been shocks at every turn, but one element of the season that hasn’t surprised is the sumptuous form of Harry Kane.
The England skipper has always scored goals, but in the current campaign we’ve seen so much more from the 27-year-old, and with only 18 Premier League games under his belt he’s contributed directly to 23 goals (12 goals and 11 assists) in the competition, according to (Transfermarkt).
Part of that is down to his magnificent partnership with Spurs’ South Korean dynamo Heung-Min Son, but it cannot go unnoticed that Kane’s ability as both a creator and a finisher is at an all-time high.
The goals and assists themselves are impressive enough, yet when digging deeper to find the underlying numbers, our admiration for Kane only grows.
In the current campaign, we’ve seen Kane feature for a total of 1615 minutes, almost a full 1000 minutes less than he managed in the entirety of 2019/20 (2595), yet he’s racked up nine more assists this time around and is only six goals behind the 18 he bagged in that campaign, as per Understat.
For those sceptics out there who may not be convinced – we’re not done yet. It’s not just down to the fact that Son is in electric form in front of goal that Kane’s assist tally is so high, as the level of passing Kane is producing is off the charts.
The Tottenham talisman has outperformed his xG (expected goals) in every Premier League season he’s played in, yet over the previous three full campaigns between 2017-2020, he’s managed to underperform his xA (expected assists).
That’s not the case this time around. His xA statistic of 5.41 is being smashed out of the park by his total of 11 assists, with that coming down to the fact that Kane is averaging a career-high 1.62 key passes per game.
Those numbers mean that Kane’s xA90 (expected assists per 90 minutes) is at a whopping 0.30, which when tallied with his xG0 (expected goals per 90 minutes) of 0.60, totals 0.90 expected goal involvements per 90 minutes in the Premier League.
When comparing this tally with the rest of the Premier League, of all the players who have completed at least 500 minutes in the competition, only Kevin De Bruyne, Bruno Fernandes and Jamie Vardy boast better expected goals and assists per 90 minutes.
Even with that being the case though, none of that trio has managed to turn their underlying numbers into hard and fast goals like Kane has, with all of them falling short of the Spurs man’s 23 combined goals and assists.
It also has to be said that we are only 18 games into the Premier League campaign. With 20 games left to go, if Kane is to play every available minute left in the competition the numbers have him scoring another 12 goals and registering another six assists.
This would have the England man ending the campaign with 24 goals and 17 assists, a combined 41 goal contributions in 38 game season that would only fall behind Thierry Henry’s 44 in 2002/03, Luis Suarez’s 43 in 2013/14 and Mo Salah’s 42 in 2017/18, according to data from Planet Football.
However, that is only if Kane starts to revert to the average goals scored/assisted for the underlying numbers that he is putting up. If his goal and assist tallies continue to outperform these numbers then there will be records being smashed all over the place.
Instead, if Kane continues to score and assist at his current rate of a goal every 134 minutes and an assist every 146 minutes for the remaining 1800 minutes of Premier League football on offer then his numbers will be even more startling.
At this rate, he’ll end the season with 25 goals and 23 assists, a total of 48 goal involvements, more than any player has ever managed in a 38 game Premier League season.
It remains to be seen whether or not the 27-year-old will be able to keep this hot streak going though. Injuries could obviously derail things for Kane – as they have done so before – but if he can stay fit it would be silly to bet against Tottenham’s #10.
This is clearly the best form that we have ever seen Harry Kane in and all there is to be done is to enjoy his brilliance week in week out. The hope now is just that this individual form can be capitalised on by Jose Mourinho to bring his star man the one thing that his illustrious career has so far lacked – silverware.