Danny Ings’ superb performance against Tottenham Hotspur on Wednesday evening was a reminder if any were needed that he could be the missing piece to the Spurs jigsaw.
With Tottenham striker Harry Kane unavailable through injury, the Saints striker took centre stage at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium until his own withdrawal in the 57th minute with a hamstring injury.
Ings opened the scoring with a fantastic header in the 30th minute, as James Ward-Prowse strode up the take a Saints corner Ings timed his run to perfection. The England international got ahead of his marker Serge Aurier with ease and angled a perfect header into the far post to give Southampton the lead their dominance deserved.
“It’s a great bit of movement from Danny Ings, he doesn’t have to do too much though. Serge Aurier is not tight enough but to direct a header there off the back post is an absolutely superb header.”
Bent added: “It is an unbelievable bit of technique from Danny Ings but I expect no less from someone of that quality but that is not an easy header.”
Kane has an unfortunate habit of picking up ankle injuries every season for Tottenham and with neither Jose Mourinho, nor it seems Ryan Mason, fully trusting Carlos Vinicius to start in his absence another striker is seen as a priority for Spurs next season.
Ings opening strike against Spurs was his 100th goal in professional football and the Saints marksmen is bound to be a wanted man this summer.
The former Liverpool striker will have just 12 months remaining on his contract come the end of the season so a deal could well be in Southampton’s best interests if they do not wish to see the 28-year-old leave on a free transfer in 2022.
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Ings has three England caps and one goal to his name and will be aiming to make Gareth Southgate’s Three Lions squad for this summer’s European Championships.
He has often had to play a backup role to Kane when on international duty a fact that may hinder any Spurs move for the striker.
However, with Kane’s ability to drop into the No.10 position and his sketchy injury record there could well be space in the team for both Kane and Ings if Daniel Levy can get a deal over the line for the Southampton number nine.
Ings’ own injury issues may give Spurs a doubt over the move. However, if both the Saints striker and Kane can rotate and have their minutes managed then it is quite feasible that both men will suffer from fewer recurring issues going forward.