Harry Kane, Lucas Moura, Oliver Skipp: What we learned as Tottenham and Sevilla play out entertaining draw

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Tottenham ended their South Korea tour with a draw against Sevilla.  (Getty Images)
Tottenham ended their South Korea tour with a draw against Sevilla. (Getty Images)

Tottenham rounded off their pre-season trip to South Korea with a 1-1 draw against La Liga side Sevilla in Suwon.

Harry Kane and Ivan Rakitic scored crisp finishes in the second half in a high-intensity and surprisingly feisty friendly, which saw Ben Davies forced off in the second half following a clash of heads.

With the usual caveats that this was a pre-season friendly, here are Standard Sport’s talking points from the game:

Kane and Son live up to star billing

Harry Kane and Heung-min Son lived up to their star billing in Suwon. (Tottenham Hotspur FC via Getty Images)
Harry Kane and Heung-min Son lived up to their star billing in Suwon. (Tottenham Hotspur FC via Getty Images)

Most of the 44,000 supporters at the Suwon World Cup Stadium had presumably come to see Son first and Kane second, and the star attractions did not disappoint.

Kane has looked full of confidence in Korea and he nearly added to his two goals from outside the box on Wednesday with another crisp long-range strike in the first half, only to be flagged offside.

The England captain got his goal after the break and predictably Son was the provider, playing in Kane after a neat piece of skill.

There’s not much more to say about Kane and Son but it is worth pointing out that like the entire squad, they will only benefit from a full pre-season under Conte.

Kane, after all, didn’t really get going until mid-December last season (Conte arrived on November 1) while Son also took time to find his feet in the Italian’s system before exploding in the final months of the season.

Kane is always seeking marginal gains to improve, and if Son’s dad is to be believed, last season’s Premier League Golden Boot winner can also go up a level or two.

Implausible as it may seem, the most lethal pair in Premier League history should have the platform to be even better in the coming season.

A new role for Lucas

Lucas Moura was handed a chance to impress at right wing-back. (Tottenham Hotspur FC via Getty Images)
Lucas Moura was handed a chance to impress at right wing-back. (Tottenham Hotspur FC via Getty Images)

With Djed Spence back in London waiting to be unveiled as a Spurs player, Conte is not short of options at right wing-back.

So it was a surprise to see Lucas Moura line up there against Sevilla, with Matt Doherty and Emerson Royal second half subs.

Last season, you wondered if Lucas might be given a chance to be Spurs’ Victor Moses (he’s not a dissimilar profile to January target Adama Traore) but Conte never experimented with the Brazilian at wing-back.

With Richarlison boosting Spurs’ attacking options and Ivan Perisic also able to play in the front three, is Conte considering converting Lucas to wing-back for the new season?

Possibly, although it’s just as likely the selection was based on little more than managing minutes during pre-season or perhaps a desire for a speedier option on the flank, more similar to Spence in profile.

Either way, it’s a situation worth keeping an eye on. Clearly, Lucas spending time at wing-back next season would be grim news for Doherty and Emerson, who have both expressed a desire to stay at Spurs.

For what it’s worth, Lucas did OK, getting up and down well, even if he lacked end product in the final third.

Midfield battle hard to call

Oliver Skipp impressed as he continues his return to action (Tottenham Hotspur FC via Getty Images)
Oliver Skipp impressed as he continues his return to action (Tottenham Hotspur FC via Getty Images)

From February last season, Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg and Rodrigo Bentancur were firmly established as Conte’s midfield two but for all their qualities this was as much about necessity as design.

With Oliver Skipp sidelined from January and Harry Winks -- who has been left in London -- unfancied, Conte had few options.

But that’s different now.

Skipp is fit again, and started for the second time in South Korea against the Spaniards, while Spurs have signed Yves Bissouma from Brighton, although his pre-season preparations have been rocked by a positive Covid test and he is still isolating in the team hotel in Seoul.

With Spurs competing on four fronts across the most relentless season in history, all four will get plenty of minutes but it will be intriguing to see which pair emerge as Conte’s first choice two.

Of today’s starters, Skipp put in another impressive display in Suwon, although it was a mixed outing from Hojbjerg, who twice gifted Sevilla chances with loose passes in the first half.

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