Former Arsenal and France midfielder Emmanuel Petit has offered a critical look at Tanguy Ndombele’s spell at Tottenham so far.
As noted by BBC Sport, Spurs signed the 23-year-old last summer and spent a new club-record transfer fee of £53.8m, which could yet rise to £62.8m with add-ons.
Ndombele has made 27 appearances so far this season, scoring two goals and providing four assists, but he has come in for scrutiny and criticism along the way for a lack of consistency.
Jose Mourinho opted to publicly criticise him after the draw with Burnley earlier this month, a view that was even shared by Sky Sports pundit Jamie Carragher who backed his criticism with some harsh words being used to describe the Frenchman’s performance.
Now, Petit has analysed the former Lyon midfielder and France international, and has insisted that he must do more to become a top player as he questioned his mentality and physical condition in terms of whether to not he’s doing enough to be in the best position possible to flourish.
“He received the same criticisms at Lyon,” he told the Sun. “He was not regularly a top player. Sometimes he could play a beautiful game — then three days later be average. He is not consistent enough. He doesn’t play well with any regularity.
“He has quality but I agree with Mourinho in that Ndombele could do much more. If he wants to be a top player he needs to perform well every game. Every player has the right to a bad game now and then. But you don’t have the right not to give 100 per cent.
“When he wakes up every morning he needs to ask the same question, ‘Am I doing the best I can?’
“It is hard to be a top player and you have to sacrifice everything to get there. You cannot lie to yourself.
“Is he overweight? He looks a little bit. But his body language does not help him. He needs to improve physically. When I see him I think ‘Come on, you can do more than that’.”
Time will tell if Ndombele listens to the advice being given to him and reacts in a positive way to the criticism or not, as although he may have needed time to adapt to England, given his price-tag, there are big expectations over his impact at Spurs moving forward.
There is no doubt that he’s a talented player. Tottenham wouldn’t have spent so much money on him if he wasn’t. However, he must find that consistency and hit top form, otherwise he will seemingly leave himself open to this type of criticism moving forward and those are pretty harsh words above if you consider Petit is essentially questioning his desire and commitment.