‘He showed that he’s back’ – Mourinho reacts to Giovani Lo Celso performance

Image: SpursWeb

Tottenham Hotspur had already qualified for the knockout stages of the Europa League as they welcomed Royal Antwerp to North London last night, but the top spot in Group J was still up for grabs.

Those who finish first in their group are seeded for the knockout draw on Monday, increasing the chances of getting a favourable draw in the next round.

Spurs defeated Antwerp 2-0 on the night thanks to goals from Carlos Vinicius and Giovani Lo Celso, the latter of whom put in a man of the match display at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

The Argentine has endured a stop-start season thanks to injury, before returning to find that his starting XI spot had been nailed down by Tanguy Ndombele.

Lo Celso has only played just over 300 minutes in the Premier League this season, but was handed a rare start in the North London Derby against Arsenal.

Mourinho then kept the Argentine in the XI for the match against Royal Antwerp, with Lo Celso repaying the faith with an incredible showcase of his dribbling and creative talents.

On Lo Celso’s performance, Mourinho said (Football London): “It is not about me, it is about them. Gio last season he reached an incredible level. Then he had an injury and this season, the pre-season was non-existent for him. I said a couple of times here that Gio needed a little bit more time.

“He’s having that time. He’s playing in the Europa League, he’s coming from the bench normally in the Premier League.

“He played the last match well and he played tonight very well. It’s like Gio back to normality because he’s a very good player and when his physical condition is good he can express all of his quality.

“Tonight was the day when he showed that he’s back and the intensity is there and the quality is there.”

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