Tottenham boss Jose Mourinho has insisted that Tanguy Ndombele still has a long way to go if he is to reach his “huge” potential.
Ndombele, who became the club’s record signing last summer, has improved after a shaky debut season.
Both the Frenchman and Mourinho have reflected on the player’s struggles, after clashes between the pair. Ndombele’s fitness has improved and he has claimed that he has settled further with more time in England.
Mourinho, meanwhile, said earlier this year that he could sense an “evolution” in the midfielder’s game.
But while the Portuguese boss has more recently said that he is “happy” with Ndombele’s progress, he has outlined that completing 90 minutes without fitness problems surfacing remains a key hurdle in his development.
“My way to show it is fighting a lot against that state of mind. In this moment I am happy. I still think he can do better, his potential is huge, so yes he is doing well.
“I still think he can do more. He can be fitter, he can give us 90 minutes without problems, he can be better than he is. Of course he is happy because he is playing.”
Ndombele’s fitness proved a key setback in his debut season, which left the 23-year-old on uncertain terms.
The relationship between the Frenchman and Mourinho reached boiling point after Spurs‘ 1-1 draw with Burnley in March. Mourinho admitted that he was beginning to struggle to justify handing Ndombele opportunities in his team.
Barcelona circling for Ndombele
But while the situation has markedly improved since then, fresh reports have claimed that the midfielder is a Barcelona target.
According to journalist Fabrizio Romano, the Camp Nou club want to sign Ndombele next summer.
However, Barca will not reportedly push through a January deal for the player, who is likely to stay until the end of the current campaign.
Previous speculation has claimed that Ndombele was close to a summer move to Inter Milan.