Gareth Bale’s looming second Tottenham ‘debut’ against West Ham United tomorrow (AEDT) won’t just be critical for the Wales international, it will be manna from heaven for Harry Kane.
Spurs’ new assist king has struck three goals in four league appearances so far this session.
But the injection of Bale into the equation - according to his former Wales teammate Carl Robinson - will be “the best thing” that’s happened to England skipper Kane in recent seasons.
The newly-unveiled Western Sydney Wanderers coach played alongside Bale, 31, for three years for the Dragons and had a significant role in his international development.
While personally delighted to see the Real Madrid outcast liberated from his La Liga purgatory, Robinson, 44, believes Kane, 27, will equally ecstatic ahead of the visit of the Hammers for a London derby brimming with tantalising sub-plots.
“Harry Kane must be one happiest centre-forwards in the Premier League at the moment,” said Robinson.
“It’s one of the best things to happen to him years in terms of the amount of chances he’ll get, and the goals he’s going to score.
“For me, bringing in a world-class player like Gareth Bale means Kane is guaranteed at least 20 goals.
“It just takes everything to another level. At top clubs, you have two first-class centre-forwards, but Tottenham hasn’t really had that for some reason.
“They’re one of the few top six or seven that don’t have that, and with Kane suffering injuries from time to time that’s been a problem.
“Jose Mourinho has lobbied hard to change that, and Bale now offers the answer because he too can play as a number nine, which he’s done for Wales many times.”
Kane, who already boasts a league-high six assists, hasn’t exactly struggled in recent seasons as it is, with tallies of 18, 17, 30, 29 and 25 league goals over the past five.
However, with Bale on one wing and Son Heung-Min on the other, a smorgasbord of openings awaits.
“The level is so high, and the amount of games Spurs will have this season in all competitions means the likelihood of all three playing together all the time is slim,” added Robinson.
“So that’s where the versatility of the likes of Gareth comes in.”
Robinson also believes Bale’s unveiling after several weeks of preparation is a Godsend for Wales going into next year’s European Championships.
“Look, Gareth has moved for football reasons, not financial, and he knows how important it is that he is playing,” he stressed.
“He’s a fantastic player and wants to be at his best for Wales next summer.
“He’s won everything with Real Madrid but things weren’t working out there in recent times and the timing is perfect now for him to be back at a club where he was previously very happy.
“Wales are also going to be the beneficiaries because top players need to play, and he wants to be in a position to be one of the best players at the Euros as well as the Premier League.
“He knows it’s a short career and he’s back in a league which suits him.
“Of course they’ll be pressure but I think he’ll thrive on that.
“I stayed involved with Wales at the back-end of my career predominantly to help the younger players like Aaron Ramsey and Gareth develop.
“During that two to three year period under John Toshack, I was able to help guide them and give them the benefit of my experience.”
Bale, who has an enduring friendship with Robinson, lobbied for him to handed the coaching reins which ultimately went to the current incumbent, Ryan Giggs.
“Any Welsh manager will tell you they want to manage Wales one day,” added Robinson.
“And anybody who says they don’t, well it’s either one of two things: they’re either lying or they don’t want to test themselves at that level.
“I’m made it clear from day one when I went into coaching I’d like to manage my country one day.
“When that time is I don’t know. Will I get that opportunity? I don’t know.
“I’ve been travelling across the world (five years in charge of Vancouver Whitecaps prior to arriving in Australia with the Newcastle Jets) to get the experience I’ll need.
“I’ve got 220 games as a manager under my belt now, and if and when the opportunity does come at some point in my career to go back I’ll be fully prepared and ready.”
Meantime Robinson has the daunting task of breathing life back into a Western Sydney side starved of success in recent years.