The Tottenham striker put Borussia Dortmund to the sword on Wednesday, thus proving himself worth a place among the continent’s top goalscorers.
As Harry Kane rushed to the corner flag, arms outstretched, screaming in delight, the England striker took his place amongst the world’s elite strikers.
There was an argument before the meeting of Tottenham and Borussia Dortmund at Wembley that Kane would have to score against the best to truly merit the recent comparisons with the likes of Luis Suarez and Sergio Aguero, and he did just that on Wednesday, putting BVB to the sword in a display of pace and panache.
Kane is arguably the best pure striker England has produced since Alan Shearer and his numbers at Spurs are staggering. He reached 100 goals for the club against Everton at the weekend and widely retweeted stats proved that he had achieved his century quicker than the likes of Thierry Henry and Cristiano Ronaldo.
In Tottenham’s Champions League opener, he did not give Dortmund a moment’s rest, hassling and harrying from the very first minute. He was involved in the first goal, setting Son Heung-Min free on the halfway line. The South Korea international then sped into the box, beat his man and fired past Roman Burki at the near post.
This performance, built on lightning counters and robust midfield play, was Spurs of White Hart Lane, but it needed a focal point, a leader at the top of the pitch, and Kane was able.
He was excellently supported by a dynamic, pacy performance from Son on the left flank. The South Korea international excels when asked to run beyond and Son did just that, turning Lukasz Piszczek at right-back inside out.
Not to forget that Dortmund has two goals disallowed for offside.
Vertonghen showed a second yellow after the referee adjudges him to have elbowed Gotze in the dying minutes.
The £23 million signing from PSG had not played a game this season before Wednesday’s marquee encounter but he completed the 90 minutes with aplomb, easing fans’ fears about the sale of Kyle Walker to Manchester City.
But this night belonged to Kane. Pochettino has a man for all seasons in the 24-year-old, who has gone from strength to strength under his management.
Kane is now a truly world-class striker, capable of winning games on his own, even against the very best teams on the continent.
He has been through the rough at Spurs, taking in loan spells at Millwall and Norwich City, sitting on the bench behind the languid, divisive Emmanuel Adebayor, and helping the club through the truly toxic reign of Tim Sherwood, and he is reaping the rewards, with Tottenham now taking the smooth road, challenging for titles and playing some truly sparkling football.
Kane is one of Spurs’ own but he must now be considered one of the world’s top strikers.