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18-Sep-2020, 03:57 am

Mourinho: I never doubted Ndombele's quality, only his professionalism

Kane Ndombele Spurs 2020

Jose Mourinho says he never doubted Tanguy Ndombele’s quality following the midfielder’s match-winning performance against Lokomotiv Plovdiv in Europa League qualifying.

The Frenchman scored the winning goal after Harry Kane had equalised from the penalty spot and generally impressed in a positive performance. Ndombele completed 100 per cent of the passes he attempted in the game, 21 out of 26 of which came in the attacking half.

He has struggled for playing time since Mourinho’s arrival at the club, and there have been plenty of rumours linking him with a move away from north London.

However, Mourinho says he has always believed in Ndombele’s ability – but he maintains he had question marks about his professionalism.

“Tanguy is in a process of evolution,” Mourinho said in his post-match press conference.

“Last season he wasn't. Last season he was stuck in a situation where I couldn't see evolution. In this moment he's training very, very well.

“He's recovering from his injury, he's recovering physically and today he gave us what we needed in this last 30 minutes.

“In this moment, I believe in Tanguy. I never doubted his quality. Never. I doubted in some moments his motivation and commitment and professional attitude.

“In this moment I believe in him. Today we made this decision together to not start the game because he also feels that he needs a bit more but in this moment I think that Tanguy can do well for us.”

Mourinho said in early July that he believed Ndombele could still come good at Spurs despite his underwhelming start, and fans will no doubt be hoping he can now kick on.

"Football is full of players with difficult starts,” he said.

“Luka Modric in Real Madrid, after six months he was elected the worst signing of Real Madrid history by the fans and press, a few months later he was champion, then European champion and then voted the best player in the world.

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