Former Tottenham boss Jose Mourinho has likened Real Madrid talisman Karim Benzema to England captain Harry Kane, but has explained that the latter has more of a ‘killer instinct’ in front of goal.
The Portuguese has managed some of the best footballers around during his long and successful career, and the two aforementioned strikers are right up there with the best of the crop.
Now that Benzema has been recalled to the French national team for the first time in six years, both him and Kane are solid bets for the Euro 2020 Golden Boot award.
But it’s difficult to decide who you would choose between the two. In a column with The Times, Mourinho explained that they’re both very similar, but Kane has something that sets him apart from the Real Madrid man.
Mourinho said that the best compliment he can pay to Benzema is that Cristiano Ronaldo was in love with him whilst they were at Madrid, and that unselfishness is a trait that Kane shares.
“For Cristiano to be in love with another attacking player means that he does a lot for Cristiano and he does a lot for every attacker that plays around him,” said Mourinho. “He’s probably the only No 9 I know that is not selfish in his game. Karim is a very sweet guy. He’s very calm. He’s very much a team man.
“In that sense I can compare him with Harry [Kane]. I would say Harry scores more goals, has probably more of that killer instinct.”
Kane’s stats last season justify Mourinho’s point. With 23 goals, he won the Premier League Golden Boot with England, whilst his 14 assists also earned him the Playmaker of the Season award.
That being said, Mourinho took nothing away from Benzema’s ability and thinks that he could excel within a strong French team.
“Karim is absolutely amazing and when you look at the French team and you imagine Antoine Griezmann and Kylian Mbappe playing with Benzema, I think it can be something great.”
With France and England both playing in their tournament openers over the weekend, it’ll be interesting to see which of the two makes the first big statement in the race to be the top goal scorer in the competition.