“The arrival of Mateo Kovacic at Stamford Bridge didn’t convince me that anything had changed until his performance against Norwich.“In the absence of N’Golo Kante, the Croatia international looked immense. I knew he could tackle, compete and was full of enthusiasm but I didn’t think he could play.“Every time I watch him at Stamford Bridge, he plays the ball everywhere apart from where it should have gone.“His performance against Norwich proved he is much better than that. His manger Lampard may have discovered a player here.” Getty Images – Getty latest Mateo Kovacic starred against Norwich City And with Leicester City talisman James Maddison enjoying a barnstorming game at Stamford Bridge the following week, it became apparent something had to change.With N’Golo Kante absent through injury, Lampard tuned to Kovacic against Norwich City and the 26-year-old excelled in the 3-2 victory.After an indifferent debut season at Stamford Bridge, the Croatia international made his move from Real Madrid permanent this summer and Crooks believes he is delivering elite performances.He told the BBC: “Since the departures of Didier Drogba, Michael Ballack, John Terry and Frank Lampard, Chelsea have lacked leadership on the pitch. Ian Holloway thinks Arsenal have made a mistake in hiring Mikel Arteta rookie error Liverpool news live: Klopp reveals when Minamino will play and issues injury update Chelsea have found the ideal replacement for the likes of Michael Ballack and Frank Lampard in the form of Mateo Kovacic.That’s according to former Tottenham Hotspur winger Garth Crooks, who believes the Blues midfielder has the ability and the physical presence to be a leader in midfield.Chelsea looked lightweight in their opening day defeat to Manchester United, with Paul Pogba running riot at Old Trafford. 2 LATEST PREMIER LEAGUE NEWS statement 2 deals Spurs investigation into alleged racial abuse of Rudiger is so far ‘inconclusive’ Redknapp calls Son ‘petulant’, but Holloway says red card for Rudiger kick was ‘soft’ Lampard and Ballack enjoyed a strong midfield partnership for Chelsea appointed BIG PRESENTS UP TOP Getty Images – Getty OFF What every Premier League club’s fans dream of this Christmas Steve Round reveals how Mikel Arteta convinced him to join Arsenal staff Man United transfer news live: Haaland ‘wants a change’, two players off in January
Harry Kane became the first Tottenham player to score at least 20 in five straight seasons with his penalty finish against Chelsea on Tuesday.Kane scored in the first half of Spurs’ Carabao Cup semi-final with Chelsea, calmly slotting home from the penalty spot after being felled by Kepa Arrizabalaga inside the box.Kane was originally flagged offside, but after a check by VAR the forward was deemed onside and Michael Oliver pointed to the spot. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Man Utd ready to spend big on Sancho and Haaland in January Who is Marcus Thuram? Lilian’s son who is top of the Bundesliga with Borussia Monchengladbach Brazil, beware! Messi and Argentina out for revenge after Copa controversy Best player in MLS? Zlatan wasn’t even the best player in LA! With the goal, Kane notched his 20th goal of the season, marking the fifth straight campaign where he’s hit that mark.The run began with his 31-goal campaign in 2014-15, which he then followed up on with a 28-goal season one year later.Kane then fired 28 goals the next season before last campaign brought his best total yet as the Spurs forward fired 41 goals for Spurs in 48 games in 2017-18.160 – Harry Kane is now the outright fourth highest goalscorer for Tottenham Hotspur. Climbing. pic.twitter.com/Ri9nAnporn — OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) January 8, 2019 In addition, Kane’s finish saw him become the fourth top goalscorer in Tottenham history with 160 goals.The 25-year-old forward trails only Jimmy Greaves, Bobby Smith and Martin Chivers, who scored 266, 208 and 174 goals in their careers, respectively.Tuesday’s goal marked the sixth consecutive match in which Kane has found the back of the net; the second time in his career he has scored in that many matches in a row. Prior to Tuesday’s finish against the Blues, Kane scored in matches against Tranmere, Cardiff, Wolves, Bournemouth and Everton.