Bayern's Harry Kane scores his side's fifth goal during the German Bundesliga soccer match between Bayern Munich and SV Darmstadt 98 at the Allianz Arena in Munich, Germany, Saturday, Oct. 28, 2023.

Better than Beckham? Harry Kane’s halfway line stunner might just be this year’s Puskas winner

Harry Kane has often spoken of David Beckham’s influence on him growing up – and that’s clear to see from his latest goal for Bayern Munich, which will surely go down as one of the greatest of his career.

The Three Lions captain has made a blinding start to life in Bavaria. He doesn’t look in the slightest bit fazed to lead the line for one of Europe’s biggest clubs – he’s only been there for a few months but he already looks destined to become one of English football’s greatest-ever exports.

“Maybe my journey here can be an inspiration for the younger English players to do the same and take that step,” Kane told Bild earlier this season.

“I remember David Beckham making the move from Manchester United to Real Madrid. I was a kid and I was like, ‘Wow, what an amazing experience.’”

Ever the professional, you don’t imagine the 30-year-old has been spending much of his downtime downing steins of wheat beer and scoffing currywurst outside of those club-mandated photoshoots.

While great players like Ronaldinho and Neymar famously enjoyed their city’s nightlife, Kane strikes you more of the quiet night-in with a decent documentary type. We’d be amazed if he hasn’t already rinsed the Beckham series on Netflix.

“One thing that did inspire me growing up was actually a Tom Brady documentary,” Kane told Jimmy Fallon last year.

“I was away at another club on loan. And I wasn’t getting in the team, and it was kind of that period … I was 18 years old; it was like, ‘if I can’t play here, how can I play for my team Tottenham?’ at the time.

“Come across this documentary on YouTube, I think it was called ‘The Brady 6.’ It was kind of about how he got picked in the sixth round and then became who he became – one of the greatest sportsmen ever. It just gave me a real belief that it was possible for me to go on and kind of have that career, and thankfully I was able to do that.”

Picking up the ball inside the centre circle in his own half, perhaps he envisaged one of the most defining moments of Beckham’s career – that halfway line goal against Wimbledon.

“He [Kane] has beer calm. If you have scored 4,800 goals in your career, then you just have less [of a] pulse,” Bayern boss Thomas Tuchel told reporters after Kane scored in the Champions League midweek victory over Galatasaray.

“But Harry also had to fight back today and defend himself. He secured more balls in the second half, and that was also a factor. He has a very natural self-confidence and knows that he doesn’t need many chances.”

Here was another example of the ‘beer calm’ that Tuchel was talking about.

Bayern’s clash with Darmstadt was tumultuous. They were reduced to 10 men after just four minutes when Joshua Kimmich was shown a straight red card. The visitors then had two men sent off before the break, and it was – somehow – scoreless when the half-time whistle was blown.

As if he were producing a piece of performance art that referenced the debate over his best position, Kane thrived in that nine versus ten chaos. Kane scored three and assisted another as Bayern ruthlessly stream-rolled Darmstadt with eight(!) second-half goals.

The 8-0 mauling will live long in the memory, but Kane’s perfect hit from the halfway line was the kind of goal you just know you’ll be seeing repeated for years to come.

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