Belfast Telegraph

Kane backed for international duty

Nacer Chadli has backed Harry Kane for a senior England call-up despite admitting he had never heard of the young striker before joining Tottenham.

Kane's free-kick winner at Aston Villa on Sunday was his seventh goal in his last seven games and eighth of the season.

He has nine England Under-21 caps and six goals after helping Gareth Southgate's side to Euro 2015 last month.

Roy Hodgson's senior side host Slovenia in a Euro 2016 qualifier before a friendly in Scotland in two weeks and Chadli believes his team-mate deserves a call-up.

He said: "Why not? It is up to him and the manager of the national team. He has a lot of quality and he can have some impact in the game.

"He practises a lot of free kicks like that in training. He has a great shot and he still practises it. That is good, he is a young talented player. I am very happy for him and pleased for him that he made an impact."

But the Belgium international, who scored Tottenham's first at Villa Park, admitted he did not know who the Spurs academy graduate was when he arrived from Twente last year.

"When I came to Tottenham I had not heard of him. But I am used to training with him and I can see that he is a very talented man and I can see that he has a great future," he told reporters.

Chadli and Kane netted in the final six minutes in the 2-1 win on Sunday as boss Mauricio Pochettino resisted calls to start the latter.

He has been the key man for Spurs in cup competitions, scoring a hat-trick against Asteras last month, but is yet to start in the Barclays Premier League this season.

And Chadli admitted Pochettino will find it hard to leave the 21-year-old out for the Europa League trip to Asteras on Thursday and Saturday's league visit of Stoke.

He said: "Everybody gets time to play as we play in the Europa League, in the Capital One Cup, the FA Cup soon and the Premier League, so there are a lot of competitions. Everybody gets to play minutes. So the manager has choices."

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