Alan Hutton believes the Tottenham squad are not mentally strong enough to cope with the loss of Harry Kane.
Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the former Spurs and Scotland star insisted the Lilywhites looked “lost” during the 27-year-old’s most recent injury layoff.
The England striker sat out the defeats to Brighton and Chelsea before returning to the starting XI for the 2-0 win over West Brom.
Steven Bergwijn operated as a makeshift centre-forward against the Seagulls while Carlos Vinicius led the line versus Thomas Tuchel’s men.
Kane made something of a surprise comeback against the Baggies, considering Jose Mourinho had suggested it would be weeks before he would be fit again, and opened the scoring at the Hawthorns.
Hutton admitted Spurs were “all over the place” without their star striker and suggested the rest of the squad could not handle the pressure when he was missing.
Asked if he thought the mindset around the Spurs dressing room changed with and without Kane, Hutton told Football Insider assistant editor Russell Edge: “It could be, yes.
“I mean, even myself, I have been in that situation with the likes of Villa when Jack Grealish was injured for such a long time and he wasn’t playing, he’s that person that can be the difference-maker from winning a game and losing a game.
“When you’ve not got that guy on the pitch, yes, of course, you feel the pressure a little bit more. I think the way Tottenham have been playing, very defensively, they always had that outlet of Kane getting on the ball and making something happen.
“When they don’t have that, they just look lost. They need him playing to function, really. From the outside looking in, if he’s not playing they literally look all over the place.”