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Five ideal backup strikers to Harry Kane for Tottenham Hotspur

:Headline: Five ideal backup strikers to Harry Kane for Tottenham Hotspur:
Sports Mole picks out five ideal strikers who could act as Harry Kane's backup at Tottenham Hotspur next season.
Sports Mole

Tottenham Hotspur have relied on Harry Kane to provide the chief goalscoring threat for seven years now, but finding the perfect backup for the England captain has proven difficult.

Carlos Vinicius never quite demonstrated his potential in North London, but thankfully for Antonio Conte, Son Heung-min is perfectly capable of making the net ripple when it matters most.

Kane's exemplary fitness record has eased Tottenham's concerns in the attacking department, but as the Champions League beckons, the 28-year-old cannot be expected to be starting week in week out next term.

Multiple factors must be considered when picking out Kane's lieutenant. Proven goalscoring ability is a must, as well as a reasonable price tag, but accepting a backup role and realising that Kane will always be the undisputed starter at the tip of the attack is potentially the most important.

Gabriel Jesus is seemingly heading to Arsenal, where he will be guaranteed regular starts, and it may prove too big an ask for Tottenham to expect Richarlison to start on the bench more often than not.

Taking that into account, Sports Mole picks out five ideal strikers who could act as Kane's deputy at Tottenham next term.

Andrea Belotti

The Serie A market has been Tottenham's convenience store since the arrivals of Conte and Fabio Paratici in North London, and one consistent top-flight goalscorer is set to be one of the most high-profile free agents this summer.

Torino mainstay Andrea Belotti is running down the final few days of his contract with Torino, where he has struck 113 goals in 251 matches, including six from six in 2019-20 Europa League Qualifying.

The Italy international is actually five months younger than Kane and has plenty of life left in his clinical legs, which are yet to be put to the test in the Premier League as he plans his next move as a free agent.

Of course, Belotti will be pining for a place in Italy's World Cup squad for the upcoming tournament in Qatar, and it remains to be seen if he would be willing to accept a backup role at Tottenham in that scenario.

The 28-year-old also spent a good chunk of the 2021-22 season in the treatment room, but he has plenty of experience with the captain's armband, and Tottenham would be in safe hands - or shooting boots - with Belotti should Kane ever be ruled out of action.

Edinson Cavani

At 35 years old, Edinson Cavani is entering the final knockings of his career, but the Uruguayan reportedly still believes that he has something left to give at the top level.

Cavani's first season at Manchester United was a successful affair for the striker, who impressed with his expert movement in the penalty area, but 2021-22 was more troubled for the injury-hit veteran.

The former Paris Saint-Germain striker only managed two strikes in the Premier League - one of which came against Tottenham - and he is poised to join a new club as a free agent this summer.

Moves to Barcelona and South America are being mooted for Cavani, who would surely welcome the opportunity to play in the Champions League again, which is where Tottenham may come calling.

The 129-cap Uruguay international would not expect to displace Kane at the tip of the attack, and even though he would only represent a short-term option, goals are a guarantee with a fully-fit Cavani.

Armando Broja

With only one senior Chelsea appearance under his belt, 20-year-old protege Armando Broja is being linked with numerous clubs for a summer transfer, and his Premier League appeal is apparent.

Broja struck six times in the top flight with Southampton last season, and his 6ft 3in frame would be a welcome addition to a Tottenham frontline needing a physical presence against a fatigued defence during the latter stages of a game.

The Albania international may welcome the opportunity to work under the wing of Kane, but his Chelsea contract still has four years left to run, and the Blues will likely be reluctant to sell to a direct rival.

Stranger things have happened in football, though, and possessing a young, hungry striker who has already discovered his scoring touch in the Premier League is certainly a formula for success.

Spurs would likely have to fend off heavy interest from West Ham United in order to land Broja, who would certainly not arrive for a cut-price fee given his contract situation either.

Dries Mertens

Returning to the theme of veteran free agents, Dries Mertens's future remains shrouded in uncertainty, as Napoli are yet to activate a clause that could keep the Belgian on until 2023.

As things stand, Mertens will walk out of the Naples door for nothing in a week's time, and the 35-year-old once again hit double figures in Serie A with 11 strikes last term.

Mertens has never shied away from a goal or two in the Champions League either, and Tottenham's Italian connections could lead them to the way of the Belgium international.

However, Mertens expressed his hope that Napoli would activate the extension option in his contract earlier this month, but he is yet to receive an offer from the Partenopei, who are supposedly reluctant to keep him at the club on the same wage packet.

Should international teammates Jan Vertonghen and Toby Alderweireld put in a good word for Tottenham with Mertens, the veteran's super-sub prowess could be on full display in North London next term.

Dane Scarlett

By committing himself to a new four-year contract at Tottenham until 2026 last month, Dane Scarlett clearly believes that his long-term future lies in the capital, and he will hope to emerge as a breakthrough star in 2022-23.

So far, the 18-year-old has only made 10 senior appearances for Tottenham and has only provided one assist in that time, but injuries prevented him from having more of an impact last year.

However, Scarlett has attracted plenty of attention this month with England's Under-19s in the European Championships, scoring a brace against Serbia to guarantee the Three Lions a place in the knockout rounds.

Conte will surely be keeping a close eye on Scarlett's international showings over the summer, but it would not be a surprise to see the teenager loaned out to the lower leagues in order to gain more valuable first-team experience.

Scarlett should be handed opportunities to prove his worth in pre-season, and deploying him as Kane's backup would be the most beneficial from a financial point of view for Tottenham, but that is a risk that Conte may not be willing to take just yet.

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