Kane back as Spurs sink Wolves, Man Utd held by Southampton

AFP , Sunday 22 Aug 2021

Harry Kane
Wolverhampton Wanderers' Leander Dendoncker, right, and Tottenham's Harry Kane vie for the ball during the English Premier League soccer match between Wolverhampton Wanderers and Tottenham Hotspur at Molineux stadium in Wolverhampton, England, Sunday, Aug. 22, 2021. AP

Harry Kane made his first appearance for Tottenham this season as Nuno Espirito Santo earned a 1-0 win against his former club Wolves, while Mason Greenwood salvaged a 1-1 draw for Manchester United at Southampton on Sunday.

Striker Kane came off the bench in the second half at Molineux after the Manchester City transfer target missed the first two games following his late return from his close-season holiday.

The England captain, frustrated by Spurs' 13-year trophy drought, hopes to force a move to Premier League champions City before the August 31 transfer deadline.

Kane said he has "never refused to train" with the squad, but the 28-year-old believes he has a gentleman's agreement with club chairman Daniel Levy allowing him to leave this summer.

However, City are so far unwilling to meet Levy's £150 million ($204 million) asking price for last season's Premier League top scorer.

Kane was left out of Tottenham's squad when they beat City in their Premier League opener last weekend and also missed Thursday's Europa Conference League defeat at Portuguese side Pacos de Ferreira.

Tottenham were already leading through Dele Alli's 10th minute penalty by the time Kane arrived on the scene.

Alli was fouled by Wolves keeper Jose Sa and the midfielder picked himself up to convert the spot-kick.

It was Alli's first league goal since March 2020 as he returns to favour following a long spell in exile under Nuno's predecessor Jose Mourinho.

Kane replaced Son Heung-min with 19 minutes left and received a largely positive reception from the travelling Tottenham fans, who sang "Harry Kane, he's one of our own" as Wolves supporters mockingly chanted "He'll be a Manc in the morning".

Kane had a golden opportunity to mark his return with a goal when Steven Bergwijn picked him out, but his shot was repelled by Jose Sa.

Despite Kane's miss and his late booking for time-wasting, it was a winning return to Wolves for Nuno, who was back for the first time since leaving in the close-season after four years in charge.

Although Nuno was far from Tottenham's first choice, he has made a strong start with successive league victories.

- Greenwood to the rescue -

At St Mary's, Manchester United failed to build on last weekend's 5-1 demolition of Leeds.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side needed a Mason Greenwood equaliser to rescue a point after Fred's own goal.

While United left the south-coast frustrated, they did equal Arsenal's English top-flight record of 27 successive away league games without defeat.

When Southampton last met United in February, their humiliating 9-0 defeat ranked as the joint heaviest loss in Premier League history.

There was never any chance of a repeat as the Saints competed well and took a controversial lead in the 30th minute.

Bruno Fernandes felt he was fouled when a barge from Jack Stephens left the United midfielder in a heap but referee Craig Pawson waved play on.

Moussa Djenepo and Adam Armstrong worked the ball to Che Adams on the edge of the United area and his shot deflected off Fred's out-stretched boot as it flashed past David De Gea.

Last season, United recovered 15 points when losing at half-time, coming from behind to win on five occasions.

They staged another second half fightback as Greenwood equalised in the 55th minute, firing under home keeper Alex McCarthy from 12 yards after Paul Pogba poked the ball into the teenager's path.

England forward Jadon Sancho came off the bench for his second United appearance after making his debut against Leeds following his £73 million move from Borussia Dortmund.

Pogba shot just wide and McCarthy saved Fernandes' header, but it was Southampton who should have won it when Armstrong sent a close-range effort too close to De Gea.

Later on Sunday, Chelsea's £98 million record signing Romelu Lukaku will make his second debut for the Blues in the London derby at Arsenal.

(For more sports news and updates, follow Ahram Online Sports on Twitter at @AO_Sports and on Facebook at AhramOnlineSports.)

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