One Tottenham star’s difficulties in adapting to the Premier League since his big-money arrival at the club could see him offered a lifeline at Barcelona, according to reports in Spain.
Tanguy Ndombele, who was signed from Lyon in the summer for a reported club-record €62m, has only managed to play 90 minutes five times for Spurs this season.
Signed by previous boss Mauricio Pochettino, the Frenchman’s struggles at Spurs have been brought into the public eye by Jose Mourinho, who has, on multiple occasions, publicly rebuked the midfielder.
Back in early February, the Portuguese firebrand said that ‘Ndombele needed to step up and that he was still not ready to play 90 minutes for Tottenham after recovering from injury.
The Tottenham boss has also said in the past that Ndombele is “always injured” and after he missed Spurs’ 2-1 win over Brighton earlier in the season that “he was not injured but not feeling in a condition to play.”
And it was those public criticisms that a report claimed had not gone down well with the Spurs squad, who felt Ndomble had been hung out to dry by Mourinho.
That, however, has not stopped the admonishments flying in with Mourinho again savaging the player with an incredible rant after the match at Burnley earlier this month.
However, there could be salvation with Mundo Deportivo going big on the claims that Barcelona are ready to rescue the player from his Tottenham nightmare and bring him to the club when the transfer window opens.
The report adds that, while a new striker is the main priority for the Spanish giants in the summer transfer window – on Wednesday they were reported to have already agreed terms with No 1 target Lautaro Martinez – the paper claims they are also in the market for a new midfielder too.
The article states that Ndombele’s status as “a modern midfielder” makes him an ideal replacement for ageing midfield duo Ivan Rakitic and Arturo Vidal, both 32.
However, it is stated that Ndombele is currently their second-choice option to fill any void created by the experienced duo, with reported Liverpool target Fabian Ruiz said to be their No 1 priority in that department.
But the paper is adamant that Ndombele could yet be targeted in a move that could provide a welcome solution to all parties, especially given Mourinho’s apparent disliking for the club-record buy.
Speaking after the match at Burnley, Mourinho said: “In the first half we didn’t have a midfield.
“Of course I’m not speaking of Skipp, because he’s a kid of 19 who’s played two hours in the last few days. I don’t criticise him at all.
“But I’m not going to run away and I have to say he [Ndombele] has had enough time to come to a different level. I know the Premier League is difficult and some players take a long time to adapt to a different league.
“But a player with his potential has to give us more than he is giving us, especially when you see how Lucas, Lo Celso and those players are playing. I was expecting more in the first half from him.”