Harry Kane has asked Nuno Espírito Santo whether he has to play in the club’s Europa Conference League fixtures. The fledgling tournament represents the third tier of European competition.



“I feel good,” Kane told Soccer on Sunday. “But I’ve asked the gaffer whether I have to play in this stupid Europa Conference thingy. Is it a madey-uppey pile of shite? That’s not for me to say. I’m ready to roll up my sleeves and help the boys win this Dog & Duck, pub league nonsense if I’m forced to.”

“It would be wonderful to be excused,” said the England captain. “I could spend the time chilling, recovering, sending Pep the odd naked selfie with heart emoticons covering my genitals. Just normal, everyday stuff.”

“Pep,” whispered Kane, his eyes glazing, and a single thread of saliva leaking from his slackening jaw.

“Pep,” he repeated.