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FPL positions: Rely on Kane against lower-ranked sides

The Scout 7 Jun 2021
Harry Kane

The Scout on why Spurs striker was the most productive player when facing bottom-half teams

Forwards

Harry Kane dominated the forward category in 2020/21, scoring 23 goals and supplying 14 assists in his 35 appearances.

The Tottenham Hotspur forward recorded his career-high haul of 242 points, second only to the 244 of Manchester United midfielder Bruno Fernandes.

Indeed, that total was 48 points ahead of the second top-scoring striker, Patrick Bamford for Leeds United.

All of Kane's 2020/21 goals

Kane’s displays against opponents lower down in the Premier League table were key to his success.

Most returns against bottom 10 teams
Player Position Returns Goals Assists
Kane FWD 22 14 8
Fernandes MID 17 9 8
Bamford FWD 16 13 3
Salah MID 14 9 5
Rashford MID 14 8 6
Son  MID 14 8 6
Vardy FWD 14 6 8

He produced 22 of his 37 returns for the campaign against bottom-half teams, with both his 14 goals and eight assists in such matches being more than any other forward.

Kane blanked in only four of his 18 appearances against those sides, averaging 7.8 points per match (ppm).

By contrast, he failed to produce hauls in 10 of his 17 meetings with top-half opponents, averaging 5.9 ppm. 

Kane against bottom 10 and top 10 teams
  Versus bottom 10 teams Versus top 10 teams
  Total FWD rank Total FWD rank
Shots 81 1 56 =1
Shots in box 52 1 32 =5
Big chances 22 =1 8 12
Shots on target 32 1 19 3
Chances created 30 1 19 3

The underlying numbers highlight his contrasting threat against both sets of opponents.

When facing sides in the bottom half of the table, Kane was ranked first for every category in the analysis, with his 81 shots being at least 30 more than any other forward.

Yet the Spurs talisman finished first in just one of the same categories against teams in the top half of the league, his 56 shots being joint-top with Bamford.

Meanwhile, his eight big chances against top-10 teams was only the 12th-best total among forwards.

While that shows Kane somewhat struggled when facing tougher opponents, he has emerged as the most reliable player in Fantasy when up against weaker defences. 

Also in this series

Part 1: FPL positions: Martinez shows the many routes to points
Part 2: FPL positions: Promoted goalkeepers among best for value
Part 3: FPL positions: Full-backs dominant in defence
Part 4: FPL positions: Tuchel’s Chelsea the best defence
Part 5: FPL positions: Midfielders merit more attention
Part 6: FPL positions: Lingard shows promise with league's top form
Part 8: FPL positions: Iheanacho and Watkins can push on

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