‘A nightmare for Chelsea’ – Jenas praises Tottenham’s unsung hero

Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
Dom Le Roy

Jermaine Jenas has praised Moussa Sissoko following the midfielder’s display in the 0-0 draw against Chelsea, suggesting that the Frenchman made the Tottenham defenders’ jobs a lot easier.

Sissoko once again started alongside Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg as a midfield pivot protecting the Tottenham back four and the 31-year-old put in quite a shift on Sunday.

Sissoko and Hojbjerg denied Chelsea’s midfielders and attackers any time or space on the ball and were relatively successful in winning the ball back.

His defensive work proved crucial in nullifying the home side’s threat down the channels and keeping them at arm’s length, particularly in the second half when Frank Lampard’s side monopolised possession.

Jenas identified that the former Newcastle man simplified Serge Aurier’s job by allowing the right-back to mark the player out-wide as he dealt with the balls played in-behind the Ivorian.

The pundit told on Match of the Day (as relayed by Football.London): “They were nowhere near their best but the role Moussa Sissoko has played in the last few games, he is having a positive impact on those around him, and today I think it was Serge Aurier and Joe Rodon.

“Where he simplifies things for Aurier is that he (Aurier) has one thing on his mind and that’s going to mark wide.

“What we would have worried about before is getting exposed in behind and usually, one ball in behind and Timo Werner is off.

“But look at what happens, Moussa Sissoko has not left him. He is simplifying the game for Aurier because he is saying ‘you go to him and I’ll take care of Werner’.

“That is players understanding how to play together to keep teams from your goal.”

Jeans suggested that Sissoko also ensured that Joe Rodon did not get pulled out of his position by Timo Werner’s runs by constantly shadowing the German international.

The former Tottenham midfielder added: “He also helps Rodon because he can just think, ‘actually, I can go and mark Abraham now’.

“He (Sissoko) was always there in that pocket of space. He was always on Werner and he was a nightmare for Chelsea.”

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