Glenn Hoddle has claimed that he never doubted Tanguy Ndombele’s talent and that it was just a question of the midfielder getting some games under his belt to build his confidence.
Few would have predicted how influential Ndombele would become in the Tottenham side at the start of the season given his poor first campaign in English football along with his troubled relationship with Jose Mourinho.
However, the Frenchman has quickly become a vital part of Tottenham’s midfield, with Mourinho and Ndombele seemingly having put their misunderstanding behind them.
Hoddle believes that the Tottenham boss has found the right role for the 23-year-old that allows the team to maximise his strengths while covering for his weaknesses.
When asked about Ndombele, the Tottenham legend told The Evening Standard: “There was always a player in there. I liked him from what I saw of him early doors. I think he is a really good asset to the midfield. He has got a bit of everything.
“He sometimes loses his position but I think Jose Mourinho knows that now and appreciates what he can do with the ball. He will try and win the ball when it is there to be won, I think he just loses himself tracking people.
“But he has got other players in there like Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg to do that for him. Holding players like Hojbjerg keep it simple, Ndombele does the intricate things and sees a picture.
“He is a nice balancing player to play with that holding player. And I think he has got his confidence back, I think there is more to come from him. I like him.”
Hoddle also admitted that while he would not bet on Tottenham to win the title just yet, Mourinho has the squad and the fans believing that something special is on the horizon.
Speaking about Spurs’ title credentials, he said: “Wherever Jose goes, he always thinks he can win the Premier League in time. That is why he is the serial trophy winner that he is.
“This is a very open Premier League and a lot of clubs look capable, but it is a long season, it is a Grand National, it is not a sprint. Tottenham are in a good vein of form. It is about belief. Jose will believe. He has done it before so he knows he can do it given time.
“It is how he transfers that belief to the players. If you get a set of fans, a set of players and a management team that believe they are going to win football matches, then that is the magic formula.
“It is an exciting time for Tottenham. If I was a betting man, though, I would bet they would win a cup first rather than a league.”
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