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‘So far, has failed’ – Сlub’s director gives honest view on Spurs loanee debut in Italy

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Despite scoring a lovely goal in his unofficial debut for Napoli, Tanguy Ndombélé’s time at Napoli hasn’t quite gone to plan so far, writes the SW.

The Tottenham midfielder was sent to the Serie A side to get game time, as Antonio Conte has never been the biggest fan of his, and his arrival was greeted with great fanfare.

His first outing in the friendly against Juve Stabia filled everyone with hope, but what has followed hasn’t exactly been great.

Starting just once in the first four games (three appearances overall) he was eligible for, the Tottenham loanee was hooked at half time in the 1-1 draw against Lecce, and there are already articles and comments appearing around Italy about the deal.

Napoli Più describe his start with the Serie A side as ‘complicated’, and, ‘so far, has failed’ to make the most from the chances granted to him by Luciano Spalletti.

From what they’ve seen, the Ndombele they received from Tottenham ‘seems a distant relative of the talent on which Spurs invested €60m in in 2019’.

The main excuse is that he didn’t have a proper pre-season, and he ‘mentally – as well as physically – appears in difficulty’.

Nevertheless, Spalletti ‘believes in the midfielder’, stating as much in his pre-match conference ahead of the 2-1 win against Lazio, and the manager feels ‘continuity and trust’ will solve all the issues in the long run, with many opportunities left to give the Tottenham loanee.

A lot of this was also echoed by Napoli’s sporting director, Cristiano Giuntoli, who spoke to Kiss Kiss Napoli about Ndombélé, relayed by Tutto Napoli.

He said: “He is a bit out of competition. He has great qualities but we also notice that he struggles because he’s short of games. The manager must do well to get him into condition slowly.

“We had already dealt with him a few years ago. The good relations with Tottenham made it easier for us. If he’s fully fit, he can play in a midfield two. At this moment, in my opinion, he’s better in a three so you can divide the field with more players. I think he’s better to play the mezzala in a 4-3-3. There is a right of redemption with Tottenham, even if it is very high.”

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