Tottenham striker Kane is 'impossible' to find replacement for - Pochettino
Mauricio Pochettino says it is 'impossible' for Tottenham to sign another striker of Harry Kane's calibre and that he would rather bring another homegrown forward through the academy.
The Argentine is wary of talking up his youngsters, having once compared Marcus Edwards to Lionel Messi and regretted it -- the 20-year-old is now on loan with Dutch side Excelsior.
But with Kane sidelined, Son Heung-Min at the Asian Cup and Lucas Moura "90 percent out" with a knee injury, 20-year-old striker Kazaiah Sterling could be part of Sunday's squad at Fulham, while 16-year-old Troy Parrott is highly regarded.
"I think it's clear, our philosophy," said Pochettino. "In the end, if for another transfer window we don't sign players or we're not going to sign a striker, that's not going to be a gamble, it's not going to be a risk.
"If we want to find a player similar to Harry Kane, I think we're going to start to make a mistake because to find another Harry Kane is impossible -- we're talking about [one of] the three, four, five best strikers in the world.
"We have the possibility to create our new star through the academy. You know different names. I don't want to say as that might not help, but of course that is our objective. To try to create the new star of Tottenham, to find him here in our academy, would be the most exciting thing if that happens.
"When we look back four and a half years ago, we didn't find here Harry Kane or Dele Alli as big stars. Two of the most important players today in the squad were building here in Tottenham. It's a massive thing to be satisfied about, for us and our fans."
And while Pochettino will be without two or three forwards at Fulham, he still feels he has plenty of options.
"After the Tranmere game in the FA Cup, all the headlines were for Fernando Llorente," said Pochettino. "I need to give [him] the opportunity to play, no? We have Fernando Llorente. It's so important. I'm not worried about that.
"Yesterday I was watching Barcelona and the striker was Leo Messi. You can play Llorente, or Dele Alli, or [Erik] Lamela, or Kazaiah Sterling, Troy Parrott.
"It's not that you have to play with one specific striker. Chelsea played against us with [Eden] Hazard like a striker, when [Olivier] Giroud was on the bench and [Alvaro] Morata was out of the squad. We are so crazy, the managers, that sometimes we decide to do something different."
Tottenham will also be without Mousa Dembele at Fulham after his move to China, but Pochettino feels his players sometimes relied too heavily on the Belgian and that the team can evolve without him.
"If Mousa's in the middle of the pitch, what happens with his teammates? [They relax] and give the ball to Mousa," said Pochettino. "Because not only us but his teammates considered him a genius.
"Of course we need to provide the team with a different capacity to manage the ball, to build from the back and have a different option, but the moment he's not in the team, you start to add different qualities.
"Maybe you have more capacity with [Moussa] Sissoko to add to the team more transitions, to have this powerful drive when he drives the ball. You add different qualities and you have to mix them with the team and be consistent again and find a different way."
While Pochettino has a number of absentees, he is happy to call upon Serge Aurier, despite the Ivorian's arrest last weekend on suspicion of assault.
Spurs' manager told Aurier when he joined the club that he would "kill" or "headbutt" him if he caused any problems, having arrived from Paris Saint-Germain with a reputation as a troublemaker.
But, with the 26-year-old being released without charge, Pochettino stated on Friday: "That is a private matter.
"One thing is what I told you if something happened on the training ground, in between us, [or] in public -- you know very well the things that happened in Paris Saint-Germain. Another thing is a private matter that I wasn't involved [in].
"It's private and we're going to deal with it in a private way. He's going to be available [to play]."