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Harry Kane was once so desperate to play for Arsenal he tried to become a goalkeeper for the Gunners

Rory O'Callaghan

| Last updated 

Harry Kane was once so desperate to play for Arsenal he tried to become a goalkeeper for the Gunners

Tottenham striker Harry Kane was once so desperate to play for Arsenal that he tried to become a goalkeeper for the Gunners.

Kane, 29, has spent the entirety of his professional career with Tottenham and has already cemented his status as a club legend, having recently overtaken Jimmy Greaves as Spurs' all-time top scorer.

But things could have turned out very differently for the England captain, had Arsenal not allowed him to leave their academy as a youngster.

Kane was an Arsenal supporter in his childhood and spent four years in the club's youth set-up.


When he was 12, Kane was told by assistant academy manager Roy Massey that he wasn't good enough to make the grade as an outfield player.

However, Massey decided to give Kane the opportunity to try his hand at becoming a goalkeeper after being urged to by the player's father, Pat.


"When I see Harry now I can't help but to think back to when he was a starry-eyed 12-year-old, sat with his mum and dad in my office as I told him he wasn’t quite up to the standard we were looking for," Massey told The Mirror.


"That was the hardest part of the job, telling lads that Arsenal were letting them go.

"Next thing, Harry's dad came back in and told me he now wants to be a goalkeeper - and I thought the least I could do was to send him to work with our 'keeper coach Alex Welch.

'He's never going to make the grade'

"Alex was one of the best in the business and after just a few sessions he told me 'Roy, the lad is never going to make the grade in goal' so this time Harry had to move on.


"I know how much it hurt him. Some lads are lost to the game forever because they can't get over the disappointment.

"But Harry took my words as a challenge. He went back to playing for his Sunday League team for the next three years and then signed for Spurs. I'm an Arsenal man through and through.

"But Harry Kane’s perseverance is a credit to him and his family."


Kane would in fact get his chance in goal many years later.

In his breakthrough season with Tottenham in the 2014-15 campaign, Kane acted as a makeshift goalkeeper in a Europa League match against Asteras Tripoli in the Europa League.

After bagging a hat-trick earlier in the game, Kane donned the gloves after Hugo Lloris was sent off late on.

Kane unfortunately fumbled the resulting free-kick into his own goal, proving that a career in goal may have always been something of a pipe dream for the striker.

Featured Image Credit: Alamy & Arsenal

Topics: Arsenal, Tottenham Hotspur, Football, Premier League, Harry Kane

Rory O'Callaghan
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