Jose Mourinho plays down injury for Totteham striker Harry Kane

PA

Tottenham boss Jose Mourinho does not know the extent of Harry Kane’s injury suffered in the 3-1 defeat to Liverpool, but says that it is not a minor issue.

Kane was withdrawn at half-time of the chastening home loss after suffering knocks to both ankles in the first half, but it was the one to his left one that seemed most damaging.

The England captain has a long history of suffering ligament damage to his joints, but the fact he was able to play on until half-time may provide some hope to Spurs that it may not be too serious.

Mourinho was in a more cautious mood immediately after the game against the defending champions, who won through goals from Roberto Firmino, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Sadio Mane.

For Harry to leave a game, when he wants to play always and with the team losing, for Harry to come out is not a nothing injury,” Mourinho said. “It’s an injury. For how long I can’t tell you, I don’t know. We have to wait and see.”

It capped a pretty miserable night for Spurs, who saw any faint hopes of a title challenge killed off by a Liverpool side who were back to their best.

Spurs were architects of their own downfall, though, as defensive mistakes gifted Liverpool all three goals and Mourinho was not shy in highlighting the matter.

“It’s a performance totally affected by defensive individual mistakes,” he said. “The team was very solid, very confident and in the first half we made three defensive mistakes – individual.”

Asked whether he thought the individuals were not good enough, he added: “I can’t say that. I’m not going to say that. These are your words, not my words.

“One thing is mistakes and another thing is not to be good enough. That’s a different story. I don’t say that at all. Everybody has to assume their responsibilities and try to improve.

“The reality is that you don’t need me to comment because you saw the game and you can give many directions to your analysis. You always end in the goals because the goals were the crucial parts of the game.

“By analysing the goals you can see that the three goals we conceded, the goals that was disallowed by Firmino and the Mane chance in the first minute.”

Spurs were the perfect opposition for Liverpool to kick-start their Premier League campaign against as this was a seventh successive win against them, though came at a cost as Joel Matip suffered ankle ligament damage.

The Reds’ title defence had been left in tatters following a five-game winless run where they had scored just one goal.

The victory, a first since December 19, takes Jurgen Klopp’s team back into the top four, four points behind leaders Manchester City, who have a game in hand.

Klopp was pleased to see his side return to their best.

“It was good. It was necessary, it was a good moment to show. We are still here, that is good to know,” he said.

“I am completely happy about the performance. They put a proper shift in. It was a brave performance against a counter attacking monster, which is what they are, it makes it even more special. It was really good.

“It was a good game, a deserved win. The boys played a really good game. We scored the first goal in the perfect moment. The boys made a proper fight of it and I am really happy about that and played good football.”

Klopp has conceded that he might be forced into the transfer market for a new defender following Matip’s injury, which followed another muscle injury for Fabinho.

He said: “We thought the whole time it’s about doing the right thing. I am not picky.

“We need to find the right player, we have players, not a lot in the defensive line, it is incredible what is happening there, really incredible.”

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