Tottenham's Harry Kane glad to get off mark and silence doubters
Harry Kane has revealed the satisfaction he felt when silencing his critics with his first Barclays Premier League goal of the season.
The talented Tottenham forward scored the third of his team's four goals during Saturday's 4-1 defeat of Manchester City.
That he had struggled to score in his previous eight club appearances - despite being prolific, with 31 goals, over the course of last season - led to suggestions he would fail to fulfil his potential, and he was therefore understandably happy to begin to prove otherwise.
"Maybe I shut up a few people who have been talking over the last few weeks," Kane said.
"Only seven games and a few people said 'one-season wonder'. People can judge me at the end of the season and we will go from there. I have to stay focused but it is great to score.
"When you score like last season it becomes a drug, and when someone takes it away from you you want to get it back. You want to score again and it was a good feeling to score again.
"It is frustrating [to be criticised]. I kind of use it to get my juices flowing and to prove these people wrong. I have had to prove people wrong throughout my career to get where I am.
"It is not easy coming through as a youngster but it makes me want to get better and the more people say it, the more I want to prove them wrong."
Tottenham's young team have won their past three league fixtures and, with greater potential being shown by Eric Dier, Dele Alli and Erik Lamela among others, could yet emerge as the most likely challengers to last season's top four.
Lamela impressed with a confident display against City, scoring the hosts' fourth and final goal having disappointed so far in his two seasons since arriving for £25.7million, and the forward finally appears to have the momentum required to justify his expensive transfer fee.
England manager Roy Hodgson was also present at White Hart Lane to witness Spurs' display and, in addition to showing his pleasure at Kane's goal, will no doubt be encouraged by the maturity showed by Alli and Dier, and that in Tom Carroll, Kieran Trippier, Kyle Walker, Andros Townsend and Ryan Mason there are further promising players available for selection for the senior national team.
"It is rare [for so many Englishmen to be in one Premier League team] and it's credit to the manager and the staff and the club itself in bringing the players through and not being afraid to play them," said Kane.
"I'm sure the England boss is delighted to see it in the Premier League, and maybe give him a headache for his selection.
"[I'm also] very pleased for [Lamela]. He has taken some criticism over the last year or so. But this season he has proved what a year he could have. He works hard for the team up and down the pitch and I am delighted with the fact he scored.
"He probably knows that he's playing well and that's what it's like, you're looking forward to the next game, you want to be out there playing. Hopefully he can keep building the confidence and getting better and better.
"Last year, probably a lot of our players, it was their first year in the Premier League - like me, Dier, Lamela, it was his second season, Alli has come in...
"We've learned from last year. We'll try and keep getting better and better and we can't fade off now for the next few games. We'll keep our foot on the pedal and try to win games."