- Jose Mourinho criticized Ndombele after substituting the midfielder in Tottenham 1-1 draw against Burnley
- Mourinho says he cannot keep giving Ndombele game time if he doesn't improve because the team is much more important
- Ndombele joined Spurs last summer from Lyon but he is yet to live up to his billing
Jose Mourinho has singled out club’s record signing Tanguy Ndombele for criticism after the club’s 1-1 draw against Burnley at the Turf Moor on Saturday, March 7, BBC reports.
Ndombele, who joined Spurs last summer for a club record fee of £63 million, was substituted after the first half alongside Oliver Skipp as Giovani lo Celso and Lucas Moura were brought in with Tottenham trailing 1-0.
The substitution paved off as Dele Alli scored from the spot to hand Spurs a vital 1-1 draw and grab his 50th Premier League goal.
But after the game, Mourinho criticized Ndombele for his performance.
Mourinho said: "In the first half we didn't have a midfield.
"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 he's a player with great talent. He has to know he has to do much better and know I cannot keep giving him opportunities to play because the team is much more important."
Earlier, Legit.ng reported that Jose Mourinho played as an attacking midfielder for a brief spell before calling it quits.
The Portuguese decided to focus on management at the tender age of 24.
Those who witnessed him as a player say he had the ability and potential to be world class but was not necessarily a hardworking personality.
Playing as an attacking midfielder, Mourinho was often deemed too skinny and despite making it to the top flight with Setubal, he struggled to make a name for himself, having been handed the #10 jersey.
He made just one appearance in the Portuguese top flight under his father with Rio Ave in the 1981-82 and as the days went, he realised perhaps football was not for him.
In an interesting twist, Mourinho, who was only 24, retired and embarked on a coaching career.
It is also kind to note that his pre-mature playing career has been used against him in recent times by various managers who have found themselves in a verbal tussle with Mourinho.
"He has won [trophies], and I congratulate him for that, but before he won them, I had already done that as a player. Perhaps this is a big frustration for him because he will never be the kind of player I was," former Porto legend Jaime Pacheco said once said in an infamous press conference in 2006.
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