Harry Kane proved even the greats can experience off days as the Tottenham striker failed to have a shot or even a touch in the opposition penalty area in the painful defeat to Crystal Palace.

As Spurs slumped to a 3-0 loss at Selhurst Park, Kane was a passive presence, the England captain perhaps feeling the effects of international duty over the past fortnight.

The result meant Palace ended a 12-match winless run in league games against Spurs, and it also halted an 11-game sequence of failing to record a victory in all Premier League London derbies.

For Kane, it was an afternoon to forget. Opta said it was the first time in his Premier League career where he had completed the full 90 minutes and failed to have a goal attempt or at least touch the ball in the opponent's 18-yard box.

Kane scored in each of England's three World Cup qualifiers during the break, netting against Hungary, Andorra and Poland, but the latter of those fixtures took place on Wednesday evening in Warsaw.

To be back on club duty on Saturday lunchtime in London was a stretch, even for the player who ranks second on Spurs' list of all-time leading scorers, and his impact was minimal.

Kane played 20 passes, of which only 13 were accurate, and had just 37 touches, the fewest of all outfield Spurs players who played the full game.

He also lost possession 16 times and did not win it back once.

Tottenham boss Nuno Espirito Santo admitted it had been a tough outing for his overwhelmed team, whose hopes were dealt a telling blow when Japhet Tanganga was sent off for two reckless challenges in quick succession, early in the second half.

Wilfried Zaha netted a 76th-minute penalty, before Odsonne Edouard's late double piled on the agony for Spurs, who had only two goal attempts across the 90 minutes – both by Lucas Moura.

"A lot of obstacles but a lot of mistakes also, so not a good game," Nuno told BT Sport.

"We have to look at ourselves and today we didn't play good. We never found the way to play the game in terms of possession.

"At the beginning of the second half the idea was to have more attacking situations, and we didn't achieve it, so after that all the issues that happened – the red card and all these things – made the job harder against a good team."

Spurs were also without South American trio Davinson Sanchez, Cristian Romero and Giovani Lo Celso, who are currently in Croatia having travelled back from countries on the United Kingdom's travel red list.

Nuno Espirito Santo revealed Son Heung-min is a doubt for Saturday's clash with Crystal Palace after returning injured from international duty.

The 29-year-old returned early from South Korea, missing their World Cup qualifier with Lebanon due to a calf problem suffered against Iraq.

And Nuno confirmed that Son, who has scored the most winning goals in the Premier League since the start of last term (8), may not feature at Selhurst Park.

"Like some of our players, he came back with some issues," said Nuno, who was named the Premier League's Manager of the Month for August on Friday.

"Sonny is not so well, but let's wait for the club to make the proper announcement and explain to you better what kind of injury he has."

Asked for further clarification, Nuno responded: "I don't know. Let's wait and see. The doctors will make the proper diagnostics."

The potential loss of Son will place further impetus on Harry Kane, who has been involved in 12 goals in 14 Premier League games against Palace (7 goals, 5 assists).

Indeed, only Thierry Henry (43) has scored more goals in London derbies than Kane (38) but Spurs will also be without Cristian Romero, Giovani Lo Celso and Davinson Sanchez as they look to maintain their perfect top-flight start.

When questioned on the whereabouts of his South American trio, Nuno explained: "I can tell you that they are in Croatia. That's what we decided to do to try to avoid more problems. 

"So the solution was to try to get them in a country where after that they can join the group. Now they are working with the sports science, a physio, in Croatia."

Kylian Mbappe remained at Paris Saint-Germain beyond the end of the transfer window, but his long-term future may not lie in the French capital.

The World Cup winner is a free agent at the end of the season and is reportedly ready to move.

Real Madrid, who bid for Mbappe at the start of this campaign, appear his most likely destination, but far less predictable is his potential replacement at PSG.

The Ligue 1 giants have months to plan their next move, so Stats Perform breaks down the possible options to fill Mbappe's big boots.

 

ERLING HAALAND

Borussia Dortmund remained firm in their stance of keeping hold of Haaland in the most recent transfer window, despite some heavyweight clubs reportedly showing an interest as deadline day approached. That interest will only increase in 2022 as the Norwegian has a widely reported €75million release clause that comes into effect at the end of the season. 

Landing Haaland would mean PSG replacing one of the world's best young goal-getters with another player of equivalent standing, the 21-year-old having scored 63 goals in 64 games since his Dortmund debut in January 2020, compared to 54 in 66 matches for Mbappe in all competitions.

HARRY KANE

Following Manchester City's failed pursuit of his signature, Kane announced towards the end of the transfer window he was staying put at Tottenham. City's loss – assuming they are not prepared to go back in for the England captain, as Pep Guardiola recently hinted at – could be PSG's gain.

A reunion with his former Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino in Paris would appear to make a lot of sense, if PSG could stump up the huge fee that Tottenham would still insist upon next year. Having finished as Premier League top scorer in three separate campaigns – one of only three players to do so along with Thierry Henry (four times) and Alan Shearer – he will feel he deserves his move to an elite club that can challenge for major honours.

 

LAUTARO MARTINEZ

Lionel Messi and Pochettino will know all about the qualities of their fellow Argentinian, who has shone brighter by the season for Inter over the past three years. At the age of 24 and having been linked with the likes of Barcelona, Tottenham and Man City, Martinez is reportedly on the brink of signing a new deal with the reigning Serie A champions, which could make PSG's life a lot more difficult when it comes to any negotiations.

Whether he is quite of the level to take the place of Mbappe is debatable, and this year should prove telling, with Martinez facing a greater onus to score heavily after Romelu Lukaku's departure from Inter. He has one goal in one appearance this term, a goal-per-game return he will be looking to maintain over the course of 2021-22.

ROBERT LEWANDOWSKI

While the likes of Messi, Lukaku, Cristiano Ronaldo and Antoine Griezmann all changed clubs during the transfer window, Lewandowski stayed put at Bayern Munich despite suggestions he was seeking a new challenge elsewhere. With Bayern under no pressure to sell, and the prolific striker having two seasons to run on his contract, a move away this year never seemed a realistic prospect.

But it will be a different matter in nine months' time and PSG could do a lot worse than go all out for the Poland international, even if he is now 33 years of age. Having last term scored 41 times in the Bundesliga – breaking Gerd Muller's single-season record – Lewandowski has maintained his lofty standards in the opening weeks of the new campaign with 10 goals in his first six matches for club and country, going a long way to strengthening his argument of being the best out-and-out striker around.

MOHAMED SALAH

Salah is in an identical position to Lewandowski insofar as the Egypt forward will be about to enter the final 12 months of his contract come the end of the campaign. After previously flirting with LaLiga giants Barcelona and Real Madrid, PSG have their work cut out persuading Salah to make the move to Ligue 1 instead.

Should they manage that, though, they will have one of Europe's top attacking talents from the past four years. Indeed, since joining Liverpool from Roma ahead of the 2017-18 season, the 29-year-old's tally of 97 goals has been bettered by only four players in Europe's top five leagues: Ciro Immobile (104), Ronaldo (107), Messi (125) and Lewandowski (131).

 

DUSAN VLAHOVIC

The 21-year-old Serbian came of age in Serie A in the 2020-21 campaign, scoring 21 of Fiorentina's 47 goals to finish fourth in the league's scoring charts and earn the division's Under-23 MVP award.

While not quite in the same category as some of the others on this list, Vlahovic may well be the hottest property around come next June as he already has three goals in three appearances for his club in all competitions this term. 

RICHARLISON

Neymar's Brazil strike partner is another who has been touted for a move to Paris since Madrid launched their Mbappe offensive last month. Everton made clear that they were not interested in selling Richarlison in August, but that may change should PSG be prepared to spend big once again.

Now into his fourth season at Goodison Park, Richarlison has yet to score more than 15 Premier League goals in a campaign for the Toffees, but at the age of 24, he has gained huge experience and was a key member of Brazil's recent Olympic gold medal-winning squad in Tokyo. 

Harry Kane described Poland's late equaliser as "a kick in the teeth" after England's winning run in World Cup qualifying was ended on Wednesday.

Gareth Southgate's side took the lead through Kane's stunner in Warsaw, but were pegged back by Damian Szymanski's header from Robert Lewandowski's cross.

The Three Lions still sit top in Group J, five points clear of Albania and six clear of Poland in the hunt for a spot at Qatar 2022.

"A kick in the teeth at the end there, it's never easy conceding in the last minute," Kane told BBC Radio 5 Live.

"It was a good performance from the boys though, we controlled the game well.

"Of course [there was an 'edgy' atmosphere], we're playing for the opportunity to play in the World Cup. Poland clearly saw this as their last opportunity to take some points off us and get closer to us in the group.

"I thought we handled it well. The Hungary game and this game away from home were not easy to play in. The boys stepped up and put in good performances."

Kane also believed his goal - a superb effort from around 25 yards out - was one of the best he has netted in his international career, as he moved onto 41 England strikes (only four players have scored more).

"That's probably one of the best goals, probably the furthest out I've scored for England," added Kane, who has now netted in 15 consecutive such games across the World Cup and European Championship, tallying 19 goals.

"I caught it really nicely, it wobbled in the air and caught the keeper off guard. It was a nice one to get because it's a tough place to play and it broke the deadlock, putting us in a good position. Hopefully I can continue that going into the next camp."

A fracas broke out between the teams at half-time, with Kane explaining England's players had reported an incident to the Football Association.

"There was an incident just before half-time which has been reported to the FA guys," he said. "They're taking care of it and investigating it and we'll go from there.

"Allegedly it was something that was done, not said. We haven't had a chance to look at the footage and talk to the lad."

Southgate, meanwhile, was satisfied with England's performance in what he labelled the most difficult game of their qualification campaign.

"It was no surprise that this was the hardest game in the group. Early in the game, we were a little slow to move the ball and Poland pressed us well," he told 5 Live.

"In the second half we controlled the game. If there's a criticism it's that we didn't create enough clear chances from that possession and we didn't get enough players in the box.

"While it's 1-0 you run the risk of what happened at the end. We're clearly disappointed not to get the three points but I have to look at what the players have done across these three matches.

"Given that there was no way of telling how they would react after what happened in the [Euro 2020] final, I think their mentality and application has been really good."

Damian Szymanski nodded a dramatic first Poland goal to end England's winning start to World Cup qualifying in a 1-1 draw, although the Three Lions remain firmly in pole position.

Gareth Southgate's side still hold top spot in Group I, yet they were moving eight points clear of Poland courtesy of Harry Kane's second-half blast until Szymanski's intervention.

The substitute headed past Jordan Pickford in the 92nd minute to secure a precious point in Warsaw.

It was a result England might have taken beforehand, but the late leveller will send the Euro 2020 finalists home frustrated after five straight victories.

England kept up their 100 per cent record in World Cup qualifying with a 4-0 win over Andorra at Wembley on Sunday.

Gareth Southgate made 11 changes to the team that won in Hungary by the same scoreline, with Trent Alexander-Arnold starting in midfield and Patrick Bamford handed a full debut in attack.

Jesse Lingard broke the deadlock after 18 minutes but it was not until the final quarter of the game that the Euro 2020 finalists at last pulled clear on the scoresheet, Harry Kane scoring a penalty before Lingard prodded home a clever second.

Bukayo Saka headed in a late fourth from Lingard's cross after England caught Andorra napping with a quick corner.

Lingard, who has only played four minutes for Manchester United this season, was in the mood to impress from the off. He finished with aplomb with his left foot after Saka's cross was nodded into his path, and only the offside flag denied him a quick-fire second when he raced through and lobbed goalkeeper Josep Gomes.

Bamford almost provided a debut assist for Conor Coady, his header down hooked over by the Wolves defender from six yards.

Reece James crashed a fine effort off the crossbar early in the second half but, with Andorra keeping the home side at bay, Southgate turned to Kane, Jack Grealish and Mason Mount off the bench.

That was the trio that finally got England their second goal: Grealish and Mount combined well, the Chelsea man was bundled over in the box by Christian Garcia, and Kane converted from the spot.

Lingard had a quieter second half but made it 3-0 with 12 minutes remaining, a toe-poke from the edge of the box bamboozling goalkeeper Gomes and finding the bottom-right corner.

And it was the United man who delivered a pinpoint cross for Saka to nod in the fourth, the Arsenal winger marking his 20th birthday in style.

 

What does it mean? England comfortably on track for Qatar

With five wins from five games and just one goal conceded, England are six points clear at the top of Group I and their place at the World Cup is now well within reach.

This straightforward win also allowed Southgate to hand some fringe players the chance to impress while experimenting with his line-up, Alexander-Arnold's and James' credentials in midfield perhaps something to consider for tougher matches.

Andorra, with one win from their five qualifiers, are fifth in the group.

Lingard looking lively

Despite a lack of action at club level, Lingard looked sharp and eager to impress, taking his two chances extremely well and completing all but six of his passes.

He will hope to have caught the eye not just of Southgate, but also of United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer ahead of the resumption of the Premier League next weekend. There was something pointed about his Cristiano Ronaldo-esque celebration after his opener.

A missed chance to impress?

While the game was something of an exercise in possession – England had 90 per cent of the ball – there was an argument that some could have done more to grab Southgate's attention.

Bamford only had 17 touches in his 62 minutes on the pitch, while Alexander-Arnold failed to create a goalscoring chance until the 89th minute.

What's next?

England face a far sterner test on Wednesday against Poland in Warsaw. Andorra will visit the Ferenc Puskas Stadium to face Hungary.

England captain Harry Kane is hopeful UEFA will take stern action against Hungary should allegations of racist behaviour from some of their supporters be proven.

The Three Lions shrugged off any hangover from the Euro 2020 final defeat to Italy with an emphatic 4-0 win in Budapest on Thursday.

Kane, Raheem Sterling, Harry Maguire and Declan Rice got on the scoresheet as Gareth Southgate's side kept themselves on track to qualify for the 2022 World Cup.

However, in a hostile atmosphere at the Puskas Arena, the win could have been marred by reported racist chants that were said to have been directed at some England players. The visiting team were booed when they took the knee prior to kick-off.

Asked by ITV if he had heard any chants, Kane said: "I didn't hear that. Obviously that's something I'll talk to the boys [about] and see if any of them heard any of it.

"We'll have to report it to UEFA as the rules permit and if it is the case hopefully UEFA can come down strong."

Maguire too claimed he had not heard any chants first hand.

"It was disappointing to hear the boos but it has happened in previous games, we knew what to expect but I am happy all the boys stood by it," the centre-back told BBC Radio 5Live.

"I have spoken to a couple of lads, I did not hear them myself and if it did happen then I am disappointed.

"Three, four of us did not hear them but you guys can hear them more clearly on TV."

Maguire's defensive partner John Stones told BBC Sport: "Personally I didn't hear it, but was told about it after.

"It's so sad to think about that this happens at our games. I hope UEFA or whoever needs to take care of it does. We stand together as a team and did do before the game and we will continue fighting for what we believe in as a team and what we think is right."

In 2019, Bulgaria were handed a punishment of playing two games behind closed doors – with one suspended for two years – after a section of fans racially abused England players during a Euro 2020 qualifier in Sofia.

England won the game 6-0, with play having to be stopped twice due to the chanting. UEFA also fined Bulgaria's football association €75,000.

The transfer window does not close. It slams shut, and on Tuesday, it slammed shut with a flurry of late activity.

LaLiga champions Atletico Madrid were heavily involved, with Antoine Griezmann re-joining the club on loan from Barcelona while Saul Niguez left for Chelsea.

It marked the end of a difficult window for Barca, who of course lost Lionel Messi to Paris Saint-Germain, who rounded off a stellar three months by not only keeping Kylian Mbappe, but also adding promising left-back Nuno Mendes.

Earlier in the day, Cristiano Ronaldo's sensational return to Manchester United had been confirmed, perhaps putting the Red Devils right in the mix for the Premier League title, while Chelsea - buoyed by Romelu Lukaku's comeback - cannot be ignored.

Here, Stats Perform looks at the winners, and losers, of what has been a chaotic transfer window.

 

THE WINNERS

Paris Saint-Germain

Let's start with the obvious. Achraf Hakimi, Mendes, Sergio Ramos, Gianluigi Donnarumma, Georgino Wijnaldum and, of course Messi. Oh, and PSG kept hold of Mbappe, too, rebuffing three bids - the final one reportedly worth €200m - from Real Madrid for the 22-year-old superstar who is out of contract next year. Speaking of out of contract players, Ramos, Donnarumma, Wijnaldum and Messi were all brought in for combined fees of €0, although their wages are sure to be astronomical even by PSG's standards. In Mbappe, Neymar and Messi, PSG have, on paper, what could be the most feared attacking trident of the modern era, not to mention Angel Di Maria in reserve. Mauricio Pochettino's side look suspect defensively but have Ramos to come in, while Donnarumma will compete with Keylor Navas. If they do not win the Champions League this season, will they ever manage it?

Manchester United

It remains to be seen whether United really needed to go out and buy Ronaldo, but the temptation – and reportedly, the requirement to get one over on noisy neighbours Manchester City – was just too much. However, there is no doubting Ronaldo brings a focal point you could argue was still missing from the Red Devils' attack, though with so much quality at his disposal the pressure will be on Ole Gunnar Solskjer to deliver a trophy. United spent big on Jadon Sancho and also brought in a world class defender in Raphael Varane. A title tilt might not be expected just yet, but silverware in some form must be the goal now. After fan protests during the botched Super League proposals earlier this year, the Glazer family seem to have gone all out to prove they want success.

Chelsea

When it comes to Premier League title contenders, Chelsea have surely put themselves well in the running. The European Champions have brought in two major additions in the form of Lukaku and Saul, both players with a wealth of experience at the highest level, and both on the back of title-winning campaigns last season. The Blues did sell Tammy Abraham, Olivier Giroud and Kurt Zouma, among others, but the strength in depth Thomas Tuchel has to play with is remarkable. A deadline day move for Sevilla's Jules Kounde did not materialise, but Saul adds another fantastic option in midfield to go alongside N'Golo Kante, Mateo Kovacic and the in-form Jorginho.

Tottenham

For a long while, it looked as though Tottenham would be one of the big losers from this window. A prolonged managerial search eventually resulted in Nuno Espirito Santo's appointment, but the main saga was over Harry Kane's future. City reportedly made one bid, during Euro 2020, which was dismissed out of hand. The champions never did return with an improved offer, despite huge speculation, and Kane ultimately stayed put. Older players such as Joe Hart, Toby Alderweireld, Erik Lamela and Moussa Sissoko were moved out, while Bryan Gil, Pierluigi Gollini, Cristian Romero and Emerson Royal – a deadline day arrival from Barca – arrived to fill the gaps. Serge Aurier's contract was terminated, while three wins from three means Spurs sat top of the league heading into the international break.

Atletico Madrid

While Saul was a deadline day exit, Atleti have given themselves a great chance of retaining their LaLiga title. With rivals Madrid failing to land Mbappe, as well as losing two of their stalwarts, and Barca seemingly in disarray, there has never been a better opportunity for Diego Simeone's team to really assert themselves as top dogs in Spain. Griezmann's arrival, on a season-long loan with the option for either club to extend the switch, has bolstered a fearsome attack that already included Luis Suarez, Angel Correa, new signing Matheus Cunha and Joao Felix - though the latter may now find chances to play in his preferred position, nominally off the front man, even harder to come by. Saul was struggling to nail down a regular spot in the first team, but Atleti showed greater desire to keep Kieran Trippier, who stayed despite interest from the Premier League. Rodrigo de Paul also arrived from Udinese.

 

THE LOSERS

Barcelona

The chickens have finally come home to roost at Camp Nou. Years of mismanagement, and the impact of COVID-19, has left the club's finances in a shambolic state. Barca had agreed to a new deal with Messi only to then announce the deal could not be completed due to "financial and structural obstacles". Barca ended the window by selling promising youngster Ilaix Moriba to RB Leipzig and shipping off Emerson to Spurs. Then, late on Tuesday, Griezmann, who cost Barca €120m in 2019, was sent back to Atleti. Luuk de Jong, a target man Ronald Koeman worked with during his stint as the Netherlands' coach, was drafted in from Sevilla as a replacement. Memphis Depay seems ready to step up after his arrival from Lyon, while Eric Garcia and Sergio Aguero also came in on free transfers, though Gerard Pique, Sergi Roberto, Jordi Alba and Sergio Busquets were among the players who took pay cuts in order for Barca to register their latest acquisitions.

Inter

Serie A champions Inter were dealt a blow when, just after ending their 11-year trophy drought, coach Antonio Conte left the club. Financial difficulties meant the Nerrazurri had to cash in on prized assets, and Hakimi and subsequently Lukaku followed Conte out of the door. Lautaro Martinez did stay, however, with Inter reinvesting some of the funds to sign Netherlands right-back Denzel Dumfries, Roma striker Edin Dzeko and Lazio forward Juan Correa. Hakan Calhanoglu, meanwhile, joined from rivals Milan on loan, though it is difficult to see that being enough for Inter to challenge on all fronts this season.

 

Juventus

While Inter were weakened, it has to be said that Juventus – surely their closest rivals in the Scudetto hunt – also had a disappointing window. Like many European clubs, they have been hit hard by COVID-19, though appeared well set to challenge again after reappointing Massimiliano Allegri. However, Ronaldo decided he wanted out late in the window, and Juve did not stand in his way. An initial fee of £12.86m (€15m), payable over five years, was agreed with United, and Ronaldo left just like that. Moise Kean returned from Everton on a two-year loan with an obligation to buy as a replacement, while Manuel Locatelli was their other major acquisition and Weston McKennie's move from Schalke was made permanent. Based on the performance in Sunday's defeat to Empoli, however, Juve are far from the force they were during Allegri's last spell in charge.

Real Madrid

For a time last week, it really did look as though Madrid were going to end the window in sensational fashion. Three bids were lodged for Mbappe, but PSG did not buckle. Madrid did move for another French youngster – Edouardo Camavinga, who joined from Rennes on Tuesday – but overall it must be considered a poor window. Los Blancos allowed Ramos to leave on a free and sold long-time defensive partner Varane - just the eight Champions League winners' medals between them. Martin Odegaard was deemed surplus to requirements by Carlo Ancelotti and sold to Arsenal, though no buyers were found for fringe players Luka Jovic or Dani Ceballos. David Alaba's arrival on a free transfer from Bayern Munich at least softened the blow of Ramos' departure, and Mbappe may well be on board in 2022.

Manchester City

City broke the British transfer record to sign Jack Grealish from Aston Villa, who in turn have made smart acquisitions such as Danny Ings, Leon Bailey and Emiliano Buendia. While another attacking midfielder was more of a luxury than a necessity, City did miss out on Kane and then seemingly saw Ronaldo snatched from under their noses by United, though the club have claimed it is they who pulled out of the deal. Pep Guardiola went into the window wanting an out-and-out number nine following Aguero's departure, but for now the Premier League champions will have to carry on with makeshift forwards, it seems. Not that it did them much harm in 5-0 routs of Norwich City and Arsenal last month. Meanwhile, wantaway playmaker Bernardo Silva is still at the club, though he will remain a first-team regular.

Liverpool 

Unlike their league rivals, Liverpool never seemed focused on spending big. The Reds instead turned their attention to tying down the futures of key players, with Jordan Henderson, Virgil van Dijk, Trent Alexander-Arnold, Alisson, Fabinho and Andrew Robertson signing new deals. Ibrahima Konate came in from RB Leipzig to boost the defence – a clear area of weakness last season during an injury crisis – though Jurgen Klopp's squad does seem weaker. They have started the season well, but it remains to be seen how they cope without Wijnaldum and even Xherdan Shaqiri should injuries trouble them again.

Harry Kane has insisted his conscience is clear as he aims to win trophies with Tottenham despite a desired move to Manchester City collapsing.

Having expressed his desire to leave Spurs at the end of last season, the England captain was strongly linked with a record-breaking transfer to the Premier League champions during the window.

But despite City boss Pep Guardiola publicly stating his interest in the 28-year-old, a move failed to materialise with Spurs refusing to negotiate.

Following an extended break due to his Euro 2020 exertions with England, Kane returned in Tottenham's 1-0 win at Wolves earlier this month.

The striker subsequently released a statement revealing that he would remain at his boyhood club, who he first joined at the age of 11, and he went on to score twice as Nuno Espirito Santo's side beat Pacos de Ferreira 3-0 to qualify for the inaugural Europa Conference League.

Despite the saga, Kane was adamant he did not let me the media attention get to his head, and has now set sights on ending a long wait for silverware.

"I knew what the situation was between me and the club, and that's the way it'll stay," he said.

"I was quite calm with the situation, but when you're in it and you know the truth, then your conscience is clear.

"Everyone has their opinions on it, but that's part of the parcel of the profession we're in. I think anyone involved in the football industry knows the ins and outs.

"A lot of people that know me will say I'm a professional athlete who's dedicated my life to this game and that's what I'll continue to do.

"I'm fully focused with club and country and looking forward to a great year.

"The aim has always been to win silverware with Tottenham and it's been that aim every year."

Manchester City were firm favourites to complete a sensational move for Cristiano Ronaldo until a fiery Pep Guardiola hinted the deal was off on Friday.

Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri confirmed hours earlier that Ronaldo had informed him of his intention to leave the Serie A club.

Ronaldo's agent Jorge Mendes had reportedly approached City, who missed out on signing Harry Kane after the England captain elected to stay at Tottenham.

Reports on Thursday claimed personal terms between City and Ronaldo had been agreed and the transfer seemed to be edging closer when the 36-year-old was pictured leaving Juve's training ground, seemingly for the final time.

However, in a remarkable twist, Ronaldo's former club and City's rivals Manchester United have now reportedly entered the running and, in his pre-match news conference ahead of this weekend's clash with Wolves, Red Devils boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer suggested a deal could happen.

While Solskjaer's comments became public, Guardiola faced the media prior to City's clash with Arsenal on Saturday, and he claimed Ronaldo would ultimately make the final call on his future.

Shortly after Guardiola's news conference had concluded, the BBC said City had pulled out of the deal altogether. 

"I cannot say much. Harry Kane announced that he's continuing with his club, an exceptional club like Tottenham," Guardiola told reporters.

"Cristiano, I think he's a Juventus player, I cannot add anything else. All I can say in these three or four days is that everything can happen.

"But in my personal view, there are a few players, and I think Cristiano is included and [Lionel] Messi of course, that they decide where they want to play. In that position [attack], right now, this is my feeling, I am more than delighted with the squad that I have and I think it will stay the same."

Asked if he would be able to coach Ronaldo after spending so much time hailing his former player Messi as the world's best, Guardiola added: "I say the same, Cristiano will decide where he wants to play, not Manchester City, not myself, there are many things but right now it looks far, far away.

"This is a difficult press conference, tomorrow we have an incredibly important game ahead of us, but now it is about other terms, other issues.

"We are incredibly grateful to have enjoyed the best two players we have seen probably in the past 20, 30 years, like these two guys have done, in world football, we can only say thank you.

"The Argentine and the Portuguese guy were amazing in every single season, in different clubs, especially Messi just at Barcelona but now in France. What they have done, we will not watch something similar in the future.

"I'm incredibly happy with the squad I have. More than satisfied. We are the same guys except one player has left, Sergio [Aguero], and Jack [Grealish] arrived. I am focused on the players I have. These type of players decide.

"Messi, he decided himself where he wanted to play. He decided Paris, he went to Paris. These players decide. They know the law, their goal. After that there are situations I cannot control, it's not my business. I am focused on what we have to do and the players we have right now."

The Kane saga has dragged on throughout the transfer window. Multiple reports have claimed Tottenham turned down a City offer for their talisman back in June, a bid which was said to be in the region of £100million.

Guardiola, however, said otherwise.

"The club did absolutely everything. We didn't talk with Tottenham – not even one offer – because they did not want to negotiate," Guardiola said.

"When one team doesn't want to negotiate, there is nothing to say. It is understandable so Tottenham they didn't want to talk, we didn't talk, that's all.

"Maybe they opened the door and they say we want for Harry Kane £200m. We are not going to pay £200m, for one reason, we do not have it, that's why we do not do it.

"We tried to open the door to negotiate and the big master of negotiations Mr Daniel Levy, he knows everything, so we could not do it. He [Kane] is a Tottenham Hotspur player and I wish him all the best in the last years of his career doing well in London."

Guardiola also confirmed City – who responded to an opening-day defeat to Spurs by thrashing Norwich City last time out – would be once again without Kevin De Bruyne for the meeting with Arsenal.

Tottenham will face Rennes, Vitesse and NS Mura in the group stage of the inaugural Europa Conference League.

Spurs, with the help of a double from Harry Kane, secured qualification for UEFA's new third-tier club competition with a 3-0 win over Pacos de Ferreira on Thursday.

The presence of Kane, who will be staying at Tottenham despite Manchester City's long-standing interest, is sure to make Spurs one of the favourites to win the tournament.

Nuno Espirito Santo's side were placed into Group G, and have avoided too many arduous journeys, with a trip to Slovenia to face Mura – a team only formed in 2012 – the longest trip in store.

Roma, coached by former Tottenham boss Jose Mourinho, are the tournament's other favourites. The Serie A club will face Zorya Luhansk, CSKA Sofia and Bodo/Glimt in Group C.

The Europa League group stage has been trimmed to 32 teams, with Napoli arguably the headline act.

FA Cup winners Leicester City have been drawn in Group E alongside the Italian giants, as well as Spartak Moscow and Legia Warsaw.

The Premier League's other representatives – West Ham – were drawn in Group H, in which they will face Dinamo Zagreb, Genk and Rapid Vienna.

Steven Gerrard's Rangers were placed into Group A with Lyon, Sparta Prague and Brondby, while Scottish rivals Celtic are in a difficult-looking Group G which includes Bayer Leverkusen, Real Betis and Ferencvaros.

Group E pits Lazio, Marseille, Galatasary and Lokomotiv Moscow up against each other in what promises to be a thriller, while Monaco, PSV, Real Sociedad and Sturm Graz will battle it out for progression from Group B.

The first matches will take place on September 16, with the group stage of both competitions concluding on December 9.

Europa League group stage draw in full:

Group A: Lyon, Rangers, Sparta Prague, Brondby
Group B: Monaco, PSV Eindhoven, Real Sociedad, Sturm Graz
Group C: Napoli, Leicester City, Spartak Moscow, Legia Warsaw
Group D: Olympiacos, Eintracht Frankfurt, Fenerbahce, Royal Antwerp
Group E: Lazio, Lokomotiv Moscow, Marseille, Galatasaray
Group F: Braga, Red Star Belgrade, Ludogorets, Midtjylland
Group G: Bayer Leverkusen, Celtic, Real Betis, Ferencvaros
Group H: Dinamo Zagreb, Genk, West Ham, Rapid Vienna

Europa Conference League group stage draw in full: 

Group A: LASK, Maccabi Tel-Aviv, Alashkert, HJK Helsinki
Group B: Gent, FK Partizan, Flora, Anorthosis
Group C: Roma, Zorya Luhansk, CSKA Sofia, Bodo/Glimt
Group D: AZ Alkmaar, CFR Cluj, Jablonec, Randers
Group E: Slavia Prague, Feyenoord, Union Berlin,
Group F: Copenhagen, PAOK, Slovan Bratislava, Lincoln Red Imps
Group G: Tottenham, Rennes, Vitesse, Mura
Group H: Basel, Qarabag, Kairat, Omonoia

Tottenham head coach Nuno Espirito Santo insisted Harry Kane is committed to Spurs and has nothing to prove after failing to secure a move away from the Premier League club.

After confirming he will not be leaving Tottenham this month, Kane marked his first start of the season with a brace as Spurs overturned a 1-0 first-leg deficit by topping Pacos de Ferreira 3-0 en route to the inaugural Europa Conference League group stage.

Kane – under contract until June 2024 – had been tipped to join Premier League champions Manchester City, however, a transfer did not materialise.

Following his two-goal haul in London on Thursday, Nuno praised the star England international forward.

"He played good, he scored, he had good movements, he helped the team in possession, out of possession kept his shape, helped recover the ball," Nuno told reporters.

"He is still improving. But playing is the best way for all players to improve, to compete and the edge of the game is what takes players beyond their limits and that is what we expect from all of them."

Asked if Kane is motivated to show his commitment to Tottenham, Nuno replied: "My answer to that is that I see Harry every day since he joined us, every day. He doesn't have to prove to anyone. He's committed. You can see.

"All the situations that happen is part of the past, let's look and move forward, but I see him every day. I see him today in the training sessions.

"I saw him today at the end of the game, now it is time to recover. He is one more that will help us.

"I think we can expect much more from everybody, from all of us. We are starting the competition really early. I think we're doing ok. We realise there's a long way to go and a lot of room to improve, all of us, all of us."

Harry Kane marked his first start of the season with a decisive brace as Tottenham overturned a 1-0 first-leg defeat with a 3-0 win over Pacos de Ferreira to secure a place in the inaugural Europa Conference League.

Kane has played only 18 minutes domestically in 2021-22 following a heavily interrupted pre-season that was dominated by uncertainty surrounding his future, but after seemingly accepting Spurs' refusal to sell him, he was back in the starting XI and off the mark for the campaign.

The visitors' aggregate lead stood for just nine minutes as the lively Bryan Gil capped his home debut with a fine assist to tee up Kane and the England striker doubled his tally just after the half-hour mark.

Nuno Espirito Santo's side subsequently produced a controlled and professional display after the interval, with a Vitorino Antunes own goal ultimately ending Pacos de Ferreira's chances of a late turnaround.

It always looked destined to be a long evening for the away side and Spurs' intensity inspired the opener, as Harry Winks won back possession and fed Bryan in behind the defence, his inch-perfect cut-back allowing Kane to level the aggregate score.

Bryan found Kane again in the 34th minute, the England captain seeing his initial shot charged down, but Giovani Lo Celso kept the threat alive and the rebound from his follow-up effort was tucked in by the alert Kane.

Spurs' dominance continued into the second half, with Lo Celso seeing a curling free-kick go just wide, before Bryan blasted over from the middle of the area.

Andre Ferreira made a necessary save to thwart Lo Celso just past the hour, and then Bryan opted against teeing up Kane for his hat-trick when shooting agonisingly wide.

Spurs wrapped the win up 20 minutes from the end as Antunes deflected a Lo Celso free-kick into his own goal, and Kane was swiftly withdrawn to a rapturous ovation with qualification secured.

 

What does it mean? A soothing evening for Nuno as competent start continues

It is fair to say Nuno's appointment at Spurs was not exactly greeted with great fanfare. After all, a whole host of coaches are said to have been considered or rejected the club before they turned to the Portuguese tactician, and then a defeat to Pacos in Portugal hardly helped matters.

Add to that the constant distraction of the Kane saga and it was the perfect recipe for chaos in the early weeks of the season, but having claimed six points from their first two league games and confidently overturned the first-leg deficit on Thursday, it is all looking rather rosy.

There was no hint of Kane sulking here either. Wearing the captain's armband, he looked as focused and composed as ever, cracking a few smiles as he opened his account for the season.

He's not the messiah – but Bryan looks the real deal

Spurs fans are yet to see the young Spain international in Premier League action, his only previous outing being the first leg of this tie very soon after he returned from the Olympic Games. Occupying a roaming role, Bryan looked bright and inventive between the lines, his positivity a real asset in getting Tottenham on the front foot. His assist was the least he deserved in what was an encouraging display.

Kane keeps his cool to calm the boo-boys

He got a mixed reception at the start when his name was read out, but two goals and a solid performance later, he was given a good ovation as he left the pitch. Fans will hope his flirting with City will not have any real impact on Kane's form, and this was a nice way to ease himself back into the swing of things.

What's next?

It is back to Premier League action on Sunday for Spurs as they host promoted Watford at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in their final game before the international break.

Harry Kane is in contention to make his first start of the season against Pacos de Ferreira after confirming he is staying at Tottenham beyond the end of this transfer window.

The Manchester City-linked striker put a temporary end to speculation regarding his future on Wednesday by declaring that he is "100 per cent focused" on Spurs.

England captain Kane was not included in Tottenham's squad for their first two games of the campaign, but he returned as a second-half substitute in Sunday's win at Wolves.

He has been named in Spurs' squad for Thursday's Europa Conference League play-off tie with Pacos, which the north London outfit trail 1-0 from last week's first leg.

Tottenham boss Nuno Espirito Santo is happy to be able to move on from the transfer saga, which has somewhat overshadowed his side's positive start to the new Premier League season.

"It's great news, fantastic news for everybody," Nuno said when asked about Kane committing his future to Spurs.

"I think since Harry returned to us, he's been working hard. This is what we value. His attitude in training has been great. 

"It's now finished – Harry's going to be with us. He worked today and is an option for tomorrow. Like I said, fantastic news for everybody.

"We are all very happy. He is one of the best players in the world. We are all very happy, delighted to have one more option to the season ahead of us."

Kane has scored 221 goals in 337 appearances for Tottenham in all competitions and is second only to Jimmy Graves (266) in the list of the club's all-time top scorers.

The 28-year-old's 37 goal involvements last season were his most across a league campaign to date, while his 14 assists doubled a previous high of seven in 2016-17.

Despite Kane admitting in May that he was at a "crossroads" in his career, Nuno has no doubt over the prolific striker's motivation to continue playing for Spurs.

"I think it's up to us and everybody, the player himself, to get this motivation. There shouldn't be any kind of doubts to pay for Spurs," he said. 

"This is an amazing club, a good team, and we we need everybody involved during this process. It's good hat this issue is over and we can proceed as normal."

Tottenham made 11 changes to their starting line-up for last week's trip to Portugal, which they lost to a first-half strike from Lucas Silva.

Spurs must now turn things around when Pacos visit Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on Thursday, with Nuno expected to name a stronger side this time around.

When further probed on whether Kane is in line to start, Nuno said: "Let's see, we still have to decide. He trained today. It was a fantastic training session.

"But we still have to decide the starting team for tomorrow. There are a lot of things to understand. This week is different, we are all together.

"That allows us to make different decisions, different circumstances. It's a must win game, with the tie to be decided tomorrow."

Harry Kane has confirmed that he is "100 per cent focused" on Tottenham and will not be leaving the club during this transfer window.

The England captain has been strongly linked with a move to Manchester City since admitting in May he had reached a "crossroads" in his Spurs career.

Kane was not included in Tottenham's squad for their first two games of the season as the speculation mounted, but he returned as a second-half substitute in Sunday's win at Wolves.

The 28-year-old took to social media on Wednesday to declare that he will not be going anywhere before the transfer window closes on August 31.

"It was incredible to see the reception from the Spurs fans on Sunday and to read some of the messages of support I've had in the last few weeks," he said.

"I will be staying at Tottenham this summer and will be 100% focused on helping the team achieve success. #COYS"

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