Jose Mourinho has been speaking about Tanguy Ndombele’s situation at Tottenham Hotspur after reports about the pair have dominated headlines over the past week.
Ndombele has yet to taste a minute of first-team football for Tottenham since the resumption of the Premier League campaign and has instead had to make do with watching on from the substitutes bench.
Reports from France had claimed that the 22-year-old had met with Mourinho to inform him that he no longer wants to play under him (Telefoot).
Mourinho told Football.London when asked about Ndombele’s lack of action: “Nothing happens when the player has no talent,” he said. “So when a player has no talent, nothing happens.
“You are born without potential, you die without potential. When you have talent lots of things can change and lots of things can happen.
“It’s one year since he arrived but six months since I arrived and, maybe I am not the guy to go through what happened in the first six months which I think is very, very important.
“When a player arrives from a different club, a different country, from a different football culture, what happened during the first six months I don’t know.
“I know when I arrived there were problems. Injuries, small injuries, physical condition and that broke that initial impact when a player starts working with the manager and it broke the immediate impact you can have with other players.
“Now it’s a situation where everyone has to adapt to it, I want everyone to adapt to it and the club wants – when I say the club I mean the structure – wants everyone to adapt to it. Which is the facts that we are a big club and we want to be a bigger club.”
He added: “When you are a big club and you want to be a bigger club, you have lots of good players, you don’t have five or six, 10 or 11, you have lots of very good players. When you have lots of good players, you have lots of options.
“You can face the season, you can face all the competitions and then the players, the fans, you the press, everyone has to understand that when you have lots of good players, you can only start matches with 11.
“In many other clubs, it looks like it’s normal to have great players on the bench. You go to United, you go to Liverpool, City, you go to Real Madrid, you go to Barcelona. Bayern Munich and lots of top players on the bench. That is normal.
“In Tottenham, what I feel is every time a top player is on the bench it’s a drama and the players have to understand that it’s not a drama. You have to understand it’s not a drama and everybody has to understand it’s not a drama.”
The Portuguese has since dismissed the speculation of a rift between the pair (talkSPORT) and instead claimed that Ndombele is at a club where he has to compete for a place in the side and hinted that he will face Sheffield United tomorrow.
He continued: “I hope that next season that we have even more top players on the bench because it means that we want to be bigger than where we are now so when a top player is on the bench it doesn’t mean there’s a story behind it. It means that there’s lots of other options,” he said.
“The other day, when I played Sissoko and Lo Celso in midfield, there is no drama that Winks is not playing, no drama that Ndombele is not playing, no drama that Lamela is not playing.
“That’s the life in big clubs. No problem with Tanguy, no problem with Tanguy. He’s in a big club where he has to compete with other guys.
“He’s an option for me, a very good player who will probably be playing tomorrow, will probably be playing the next match. There is no problem, there is no story. We are a big club with a squad full of very talented players.”
Mourino has drawn comparisons of Ndombele with Luka Modric during their time at Real Madrid, where the Croatian experienced a tough start to life in the Spanish capital
He added: “Of course I believe [he can be a success]. I think as I started my answer to you – if you have no talent, there is nothing to do. With talent there is a lot to do,” he said.
“If you don’t have talent, you have no chance. If you have talent you have a chance. Football is full of players who have made difficult starts and then ended well.
“When Luka Modric arrived at Real Madrid after six months he was labelled the worst signing in their history by the fans and the press.
“A few months later he was a champion, then a few months later he was European champion and then a few months later he was voted the best player in the world.
“So when the talent is there many things can happen with adaptation and if the talent is there anything good can happen.”
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