Tanguy Ndombele faces a battle to work his way back into the plans of Nuno Espirito Santo after Tottenham failed to receive any offers they deem acceptable for their record signing, according to reports.
Ndombele was a £55m investment for Tottenham when they signed him from Lyon in 2019. However, in the two seasons since then, he has struggled to justify his price tag. It took him a while to settle in the Premier League, and when he was starting to find his feet, the dismissal of Jose Mourinho as coach set him back to square one.
Mourinho’s eventual replacement, Nuno Espirito Santo, has been reluctant to use Ndombele so far. Despite a lack of injury, the midfielder played no part in pre-season. What’s more, he has not been involved in any matchday squad since the season began.
Amidst all this, it has emerged that Ndombele has asked Tottenham to let him leave. It prompted Nuno to admit that it is not his job to convince players to play for the club.
But he may soon have to, because The Athletic claim Ndombele looks set to stay in north London after all.
As per the report, Tottenham were always open to selling Ndombele, but not for a cheap price. With four years left on his contract, the France international should in theory retain some decent value. Tottenham do not feel that has been met by any of his suitors.
Instead, they were willing to consider a loan exit or a swap deal for a player of similar value. However, they have not received any proposals of the sort.
Therefore, barring a dramatic development in the final couple of days of the transfer window, Ndombele will still be a Tottenham player.
Whether he can force his way into Nuno’s plans again remains to be seen, but it seems unlikely at this stage. So far, the manager has preferred a midfield three of Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg, Oliver Skipp and Dele Alli.
Ndombele has made 75 appearances over two years with Tottenham, but faces a battle to convince Nuno to give him any more, despite showing flashes of his quality last season.
Midfield target snubs Tottenham
Nuno may have to reconsider his stance on Ndombele due to two transfer developments in Tottenham’s midfield.
First, Moussa Sissoko has left the club to join fellow Premier League side Watford, potentially opening up a space in the squad.
Then, it has emerged that major midfield target Ilaix Moriba has turned down a move to the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
According to Diario Sport, Moriba would prefer to join RB Leipzig than Tottenham.
There was a meeting between his agent and Tottenham on Sunday, but it was not successful. His representative relayed concerns about his gametime and the lack of Champions League football on offer.
Therefore, Tottenham will have to consider other solutions. In addition to his preferred trio so far, Nuno has Harry Winks and Giovani Lo Celso at his disposal, while he has also tried Bryan Gil in a more central role.