Erling Haaland has his pick of Europe's elite.

The Borussia Dortmund and Norway star is wanted by the likes of Manchester City and Real Madrid.

But Premier League champions City are one particular club looking to prise Haaland from Germany if the rumours are to be believed.

 

TOP STORY – CITY HOPING TO CAPITALISE ON PUMA PARTNERSHIP

Manchester City are hoping their Puma sponsorship and a looming boot deal can help land Borussia Dortmund star Erling Haaland, according to the Daily Star.

City's kits are manufactured by Puma, while Haaland is reportedly poised to sign a boot deal with the German giants.

Haaland has been linked with City, Manchester United, Real Madrid, Bayern Munich, Paris Saint-Germain, Liverpool, Barcelona and Juventus.

 

ROUND-UP

- Gazzetta dello Sport claims Juve are planning an approach to bring United midfielder Paul Pogba back to Turin. Pogba is out of contract at the end of the season and while United are keen for a renewal, the Frenchman has been linked with Madrid and PSG also.

- United captain and England defender Harry Maguire is poised for a new bumper contract at Old Trafford, reports the Mirror.

Liverpool are considering a move for Barca's Ousmane Dembele with Juve unwilling to part with Federico Chiesa, says Team Talk.

- According to Football Insider, Newcastle United have made star Napoli defender Kalidou Koulibaly a priority signing in January. It comes after Newcastle's blockbuster takeover.

PSG are targeting Napoli's soon-to-be free agent Lorenzo Insigne, per Le10 Sport. Insigne has also been linked with Inter and Milan.

- Manchester United outcast Donny van de Beek is wanted by Serie A powerhouse Juve, claims Corriere dello Sport. Van de Beek was in talks over an Everton switch during the previous window.

- Milan star Franck Kessie is among Barca's midfielder targets for the January window, says Diario Sport. Van de Beek, Tottenham's Tanguy Ndombele and Marcelo Brozovic of Inter are also options.

Paul Pogba has been the subject of constant speculation over the past 12 months.

Manchester United's French midfielder is into the final year of his contract.

Pogba has been in excellent early season form, with seven assists in the league already.

 

TOP STORY – REAL MADRID MOVE LOOMS FOR POGBA

Real Madrid are Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba's most likely destination at the end of this season, claims El Nacional.

The France international is out of contract at Old Trafford at the end of this season and could leave on a free transfer.

Pogba's agent Mino Raiola is trying to persuade Pogba to join Madrid, despite interest from Paris Saint-Germain.

 

ROUND-UP

Liverpool target Karim Adeyemi is being chased by German pair Bayern Munich and Wolfsburg, reports Sport Bild. RB Leipzig are also monitoring the 19-year-old Salzburg striker.

Marco Asensio appears destined to leave Madrid given his current role, with Sevilla hoping to sign the midfielder, according to El Gol Digital.

– Fichajes reports that Milan are plotting a January move for out-of-favour Manchester United midfielder Donny van de Beek.

– The Sun claims that Tottenham have revived their interest in West Brom goalkeeper Sam Johnstone as they seek a successor to Hugo Lloris.

Roma head coach Jose Mourinho wants to reunite with Tottenham midfielder Tanguy Ndombele by signing him, reports Calciomercato.

– Marca claims that Manchester City are considering tabling an offer to sign Villareal forward Pau Torres .

Nuno Espirito Santo demanded patience with Tanguy Ndombele as Tottenham defeated Wolves 3-2 on penalties following a 2-2 draw in Wednesday's EFL Cup clash.

Harry Kane and Ndombele had opened a two-goal lead but strikes from Leander Dendoncker and Daniel Podence, who profited from Ndombele's concentration lapse, sent the third-round tie to penalties.

Dendoncker then saw his effort saved by Pierluigi Gollini, with both Conor Coady and Ruben Neves missing as well to hand Spurs a place in the fourth round for the eighth time in the last 10 seasons.

Despite the shoot-out win, Nuno focused on Ndombele as he insisted the France midfielder needs time to regain confidence and settle in.

"Let's try to avoid as much as we can individual analysis," Nuno responded to reporters post-match when asked about the mistake for Wolves' second goal.

"We will do it and we will do it amongst ourselves and I think we have to be patient with Tanguy because of all that happened in pre-season and this is his third game and already we've had however many games we've played so far.

"So let's be patient with all our players and patient with the time that they need to get to the level that I truly believe their talent can allow."

Kane, who has still not scored in the Premier League this term, was also on target and Nuno used his captain as another example for why patience is required with his players.

"In terms of the squad and in terms of the preparation of the squad we have players who have 65, 70 [training] sessions and we have players who have 15 sessions," he continued.

"Until we can balance everything, I think that will be the moment the players improve and get better. Harry [Kane] did a very good game, I think he has much more to give and it's about the team improving and growing together."

Wolves missed three penalties to hand Tottenham a 3-2 shoot-out victory following a 2-2 draw in Wednesday's EFL Cup third-round clash.

Tanguy Ndombele and Harry Kane fired Tottenham into a two-goal lead inside 23 minutes but Leander Dendoncker responded for Bruno Lage's men before the interval.

Daniel Podence levelled things up 13 minutes after the break following a mistake from Ndombele, but penalties were required at Molineux as neither side could find a late winner.

Pierluigi Gollini managed to save from Dendoncker and with both Conor Coady and Ruben Neves faltering, Spurs marched into the fourth round despite Pierre-Emile Hjobjerg missing.

Ndombele opened the scoring with 14 minutes gone, getting the better of Coady before drifting inside Willy Boly and slotting through John Ruddy's legs.

The visitors doubled their advantage nine minutes later, with Dele Alli carving open the Wolves defence before Kane drilled into the bottom-left corner.

However, Dendoncker halved Spurs' lead as he climbed the highest from Rayan Ait Nouri's outswinging corner to head into the top-right corner.

Alli and Kane attempted to link-up once more after half-time, but Ruddy was on hand to deny the former before Ndombele was at fault for Wolves' equaliser.

The France midfielder was caught in possession by Hwang Hee-chan, with Dendoncker subsequently finding Podence, who curled into the bottom-right corner to level.

Kane's header almost restored Spurs' lead but Ruddy's reflex save kept the scores level before Neves' deflected strike clipped the crossbar as the tie headed towards penalties.

Neves blasted over the fifth spot-kick after the first four had all converted before Dendoncker saw his low effort saved by the Spurs goalkeeper diving to his right.

Hojbjerg could have won it for the visitors but Ruddy denied the Denmark midfielder. However, that did not matter as Coady smashed into the crossbar to hand the away side their place in the fourth round.

Harry Kane made his first appearance for Tottenham this season on Sunday amid speculation about his future.

Kane has been linked with a big-money move to Manchester City, having reportedly told Spurs he wanted to leave late last season.

Spurs have postured that they are steadfast in wanting to keep their star forward, though it has been claimed they may be tempted if City up their bid to around £150million.

TOP STORY - CITY TO MAKE FRESH KANE BID THIS WEEK

The Telegraph claims that Manchester City will make another push to sign Harry Kane from Tottenham as Spurs chairman Daniel Levy remains stubborn.

City want to bring in Kane to bolster their attack but have reportedly been unsuccessful with a £100m bid previously.

The report claims City will make a further bid this week for the England captain ahead of the closure of the transfer window at the end of the month.

 

ROUND-UP

Tottenham have reached out to Juventus to discuss a potential deal for United States international Weston McKennie, with Tanguy Ndombele expected to be involved in a player exchange according to Tuttosport.

- Corriere dello Sport claims that Napoli have contacted Barcelona's Miralem Pjanic about a move to Italy. Barca are reportedly hoping to offload several players to ease their financial situation, with midfielder Pjanic among them.

- Sport1 claims that RB Leipzig remain interested in signing Barcelona youngster Ilaix Moriba and may make a move if Marcel Sabitzer leaves the German club.

- Rennes will permit Eduardo Camavinga to leave for €35m as the closure of the transfer window approaches, reports Fabrizio Romano. Chelsea and Manchester United are among his admirers.

- Romano also reports that Chelsea will sell Davide Zappacosta to Atalanta, with personal terms already agreed.

Burnley will rival Southampton in their interest for Celtic midfielder Ryan Christie, claims the Daily Record. Italian club Sampdoria are also keen on the Scotland international.

The transfer window is not even closed but attention is already turning to next season.

Kylian Mbappe is into the final year of his Paris Saint-Germain contract, while Erling Haaland's Borussia Dortmund deal has clubs queuing up.

Manchester United are reportedly set to pursue both.

 

TOP STORY – MBAPPE, HAALAND FUTURE RED DEVILS?

Manchester United have made Paris Saint-Germain's Kylian Mbappe a target for next season, according to ESPN.

Mbappe has long been tipped to join Real Madrid and Saturday's Marca and Diario AS claim the LaLiga giants are still trying to sign the PSG star before the end of the transfer window.

Liverpool have also previously been linked with Mbappe, but United are keeping tabs on his situation, with the Frenchman out of contract at the end of 2021-22.

French journalist Julien Laurens, meanwhile, also suggests next year could be the perfect time for United to prise Erling Haaland from Borussia Dortmund.

Haaland has no shortage of suitors, linked with Madrid, Barcelona, Manchester City and Bayern Munich as his release clause comes into force at season's end.

 

ROUND-UP

- The Daily Mail says City are willing to sell defender Aymeric Laporte for £60million (€69m). The Spain international is reportedly wanted by Juventus and Madrid.

Chelsea remain interested in Sevilla centre-back Jules Kounde, per The Telegraph. The Blues have also been linked with Atletico Madrid midfielder Saul Niguez, who has also caught the attention of United and Liverpool.

- Diario AS says wantaway Tottenham midfielder Tanguy Ndombele is eyeing a switch to Madrid, Barca or Bayern.

Real Sociedad are tracking PSG star Pablo Sarabia, according to Le Parisien. Sevilla could also reportedly rival Sociedad for the Spain international.

- Sky Sport Italia reports Juve are set to meet with Paulo Dybala's agent to discuss a new contract.

Ousmane Dembele has been called up to the France squad for the first time since November 2018 for their World Cup qualifiers later this month. 

The Barcelona forward has scored eight goals in 34 appearances across all competitions this season, and has done enough to convince Didier Deschamps he deserves another chance at international level. 

The 23-year-old's last appearance for Les Bleus came as a substitute in a 2-0 Nations League defeat to Netherlands more than two years ago. 

He is joined in the squad for the games against Ukraine, Kazakhstan and Bosnia-Herzegovina by Tottenham's Tanguy Ndombele and Atletico Madrid's Thomas Lemar.

Ndombele has not played for his country since June 2019, while Lemar last featured for the World Cup winners in November of the same year. 

Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba, who has only just returned to training after missing six weeks with a thigh injury, is also included in Deschamps' penultimate squad ahead of the rearranged Euro 2020. 

Goalkeeper Alphonse Areola has been recalled, but there was no place in the 26-man squad for Corentin Tolisso, Dayot Upamecano, Nabil Fekir or Steven Nzonzi.

France begin their qualifying campaign at home to Ukraine on March 24 before away games with Kazakhstan on March 28 and Bosnia-Herzegovina three days later.

 

France squad:

Alphonse Areola (Fulham), Hugo Lloris (Tottenham), Steve Mandanda (Marseille), Mike Maignan (Lille); Lucas Digne (Everton), Leo Dubois (Lyon), Lucas Hernandez (Bayern Munich), Presnel Kimpembe (Paris Saint-Germain), Clement Lenglet (Barcelona), Ferland Mendy (Real Madrid), Benjamin Pavard (Bayern Munich), Raphael Varane (Real Madrid), Kurt Zouma (Chelsea); N'Golo Kante (Chelsea), Tanguy Ndombele (Tottenham), Paul Pogba (Manchester United), Adrien Rabiot (Juventus), Moussa Sissoko (Tottenham Hotspur); Wissam Ben Yedder (Monaco), Kingsley Coman (Bayern Munich), Ousmane Dembele (Barcelona), Olivier Giroud (Chelsea), Antoine Griezmann (Barcelona), Thomas Lemar (Atletico Madrid), Anthony Martial (Manchester United), Kylian Mbappe (Paris Saint-Germain).

Jose Mourinho singled out Gareth Bale and Tanguy Ndombele for criticism after Tottenham's 2-1 north London derby defeat to Arsenal.

Spurs took a first-half lead through an astonishing rabona finish from substitute Erik Lamela, who was later sent off for two bookable offences.

But Martin Odegaard's first Premier League goal for Arsenal had things all square at the break and, much to Mourinho's chagrin, Alexandre Lacazette won and converted a 64th-minute penalty to seal the points.

Lamela entered the fray after Son Heung-min pulled up with a muscular injury and, although Harry Kane had a late header ruled out for offside and hit the post with a free-kick, Spurs' other attacking talents disappointed.

Bale headed into the match with six goals and three assists in his previous seven appearances across all competitions, but he did not manage a single shot or key pass before making way for Moussa Sissoko in the 57th minute.

Five minutes later, having similarly had no impact of note in Arsenal territory, Ndombele was replaced by Dele Alli.

Nevertheless, it was Bale and Ndombele's contribution off the ball that drew Mourinho's ire.

"Gareth and Tanguy, we need more intensity in that game. We need to press more, be more intense in the game," he said.

"We needed initially Sissoko to give us that intensity in the midfield that Tanguy was not giving us. Then Dele was a player who had a desire to play and in the last match he did not complete the 90 minutes.

"He was fresh and had a good understanding with Harry."

However, Mourinho conceded he was also broadly unimpressed with the Tottenham collective.

"It was a very, very poor first half," he said, "We did not have intensity to run.

"Everybody was dropping back and nobody was looking to attack. Apart from Lucas [Moura] with some individual actions.

"If you're a big player you play for Tottenham. I'm not saying it was player A or B. We do not individualise. Players hiding. We were poor.

"The only thing worse than our first half was that penalty."

Spurs are back in Europa League action against Dinamo Zagreb on Thursday - a last-16 tie they lead 2-0 after the first leg - although Mourinho is not hopeful over the prospects of Son making a speedy recovery.

"It's muscular. Muscular is usually not easy," he added. "He's normally a guy who recovers quickly.

"It's an accumulation of matches. I gave him 30 minutes' rest in the last match, but it's still 60 minutes."

Tanguy Ndombele is refusing to give up on his chances of playing for France at Euro 2020 after becoming more "efficient" for Tottenham this season.

Spurs splashed out a club-record fee, reported to be £64million, to sign the midfielder from Lyon ahead of the 2019-20 campaign, but injuries and poor form contributed to an underwhelming start in the Premier League.

Indeed, a lack of game time under Jose Mourinho led to suggestions Spurs may decide to move Ndombele on and Juventus were linked with an interest last year.

But Ndombele has improved dramatically this term, appearing in 24 of Tottenham's 27 top-flight games and starting 22 of those.

He has scored three goals in the Premier League, more than he managed last season, while only Harry Kane and Son Heung-min have created more chances for team-mates.

Having earned the trust of the tough-to-please Mourinho, Ndombele – ahead of Spurs' derby clash with Arsenal on Sunday – said he was focused on regaining a spot in France's squad, having last played for Les Bleus in June 2019.

Asked why he thinks France boss Didier Deschamps has overlooked him, Ndombele told RMC Sport: "I was simply less efficient. I always want to be called up, but there are a lot of players in my position, good players, and the competition is there.

"But I have tried to raise my head since the start of the season and do my best to be called into the next squad.

"When I enter the field, I know that I will be watched by the staff. Even when you're hurt, you think about it.

"I always want to be selected; it's something beautiful for a player to be in the France team. You tell yourself that you are one of the 23 best in your country.

"In addition, this is a great generation, a very good team. We all want to be called. I'm not going to lie, the France team, I miss it."

Ndombele is the only French midfielder from Europe's 'top five' leagues to have made at least 50 tackles and 150 ball recoveries across all competitions this season, in tandem with creating 20 or more chances and a minimum five 'big chances'.

Deschamps names his last squad before Euro 2020 in the coming week, ahead of the World Cup qualifiers against Ukraine, Kazakhstan and Bosnia-Herzegovina.

While Ndombele wants to be called up for that triple-header at the end of the month, he will not mind if he has to wait for his international return in Deschamps' tournament squad.

"The most important list is the one before the Euros," Ndombele said. "It's always better to be called now, we want to be on all the lists, but if the coach calls me just for the Euros, I take it too."

Harry Kane was substituted against Dinamo Zagreb in the Europa League with a knee issue but should be fit to face London rivals Arsenal on Sunday, according to Tottenham head coach Jose Mourinho.

Spurs star Kane had scored both goals in Thursday's 2-0 Europa League last-16 first leg win over Croatian giants Dinamo at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

An effort in either half turned the tie in Tottenham's favour and took the England captain's club tally to 26 for the season, the most of any Premier League player.

But Kane's hopes of improving his scoring record further this weekend were dealt a blow as he went down under a challenge from Arijan Ademi with eight minutes remaining.

Mourinho swiftly replaced his main man, having also seen Tanguy Ndombele exit the field shortly after the second goal.

But Mourinho is confident both players will be keen to recover quickly and get ready for this weekend's Premier League derby.

Asked if there was any concern for Ndombele, Mourinho told BT Sport: "I don't think so really. Even Harry, I don't believe it's anything big.

"There is a match that everybody wants to play and little things are not going to stop them playing, I believe."

Mourinho added: "I don't have that feeling [Kane is injured]. As I was saying, everybody wants to play the game on Sunday. I believe they are going to be okay."

Kane, who had three shots and created two chances, has now been involved in six goals (four goals, two assists) across Tottenham's past two games.

The goalscorer also won five of his seven duels, earned four fouls – including the kick from Ademi – and even blocked Rasmus Lauritsen's goal-bound header 13 minutes from time.

Tottenham captain Hugo Lloris said: "He even saves the ball on the corner in front of me. No, he's just enjoying his football. As you can see today, he attracts the ball.

"The first action Erik Lamela made an amazing job. I think he deserved the goal, but unfortunately it hit the post and Harry was there at the right time, at the right moment to score.

"And the second goal gives a little bit of relief to the team before the second leg."

Kane has made 36 headed clearances and 38 total clearances in all competitions this season, the most of any forward in the Premier League.

Mourinho said: "He is doing everything. He's doing the striker's job of scoring goals, he's doing the team work of creating space and assists and linking the play, he's doing the extra work that not many strikers do - the defensive one, the pressing, the coming behind, on set-pieces.

"He has very good timing to attack the ball on defensive set-pieces. He helps us a lot. We have his stats; he has an incredible number of clearances from crosses and corners.

"We couldn't be happier. I gave a rest to many of the players - and I'm so happy with that Vinicius is giving us - but the truth is when we have Harry on the pitch, it's a different story for us.

"This is a very important match and we want to qualify for the quarters. We decided for him to play and of course he was happy to do that for us."

Tottenham have generally enjoyed playing Chelsea this season. A penalty shoot-out win in September saw them progress in an EFL Cup tie, while October's 0-0 draw at Stamford Bridge took them top of the Premier League. 

Yet Jose Mourinho's men head into Thursday's clash with a little trepidation. After back-to-back defeats and just one win in four in the league, and with Chelsea playing largely without pressure as they get to grips with life under new boss Thomas Tuchel, the onus is on Spurs to deliver and underline their credentials as top-four contenders. 

With Harry Kane injured and Son Heung-min without a goal in six games, getting three points looks far from straightforward. There is, however, an unlikely Mourinho acolyte who could lead the charge at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. 

Tanguy Ndombele has gone from peripheral irritant to midfield centrepiece at Spurs, sustaining his good form even during the recent downbeat run. It's a transformation few saw coming, but it has been hugely welcome to Mourinho, who has been unable to coax form out of Gareth Bale and apparently unwilling to try with Dele Alli but has talked of Ndombele's "big evolution" in recent months. 

So, what's changed?

A PASSING FANCY?

Ndombele has made 27 appearances in all competitions this season, with 21 of those as a starter. He has scored six goals and assisted three; only Lucas Moura (10), Son (26) and Kane (33) have had more direct goal involvements. 

At the same stage of last season, when Spurs were also sixth in the league but three points worse off, Ndombele had scored two and set up three goals in only 13 starts. There were seven team-mates with more goal involvements. 

This term, the France international is third for chances created from open play (20), third for completed passes in the opponents' half (540) and third for completed passes ending in the final third (245). Still, on average, these numbers have actually diminished slightly since last season. 

Ndombele has created just over one chance per 90 minutes from open play in 2020-21, a drop of more than 0.5 since this stage of 2019-20. He has also slipped in successful passes in the opposition half per 90 minutes (29.6 from 32.4) and completed passes ending in the final third (13.4 from 15.3). His per-90 average for successful tackles and duels shows negligible change, so it's not as though he is being tasked with more defensive work at the expense of attacking abandon, either. 

Besides, few would argue Ndombele is not enjoying his best spell since his reported €62million switch from Lyon. As former Spurs midfielder Gustavo Poyet told Stats Perform News: "It looks like it was not a feeling of him being part of a [Jose] Mourinho team. It was like a conflict in there of ideas. 

"But it looks to me that this year, after pre-season, Ndombele understands his role perfectly, is playing in a more advanced position, and is really affecting the game in an incredible way." 

So, what is it that he's doing so well?

RUNNING RIOT

Put simply, he runs with the ball and makes things happen. 

Ndombele has attempted (56) and completed (41) take-ons, the most by any Spurs player this season. Indeed, Kane, who is second on that list, has only completed 26. Notably, 34 of Ndombele's completed take-ons have come in the opposition half, reflecting his advanced role. 

Mourinho appears to have identified Ndombele has a previously underused weapon – he was only sixth for attempted dribbles at this stage last season – and encouraged him to be bold.  

This season, Ndombele is third among Spurs players for ball carries – where a player moves five metres or more in possession – on 174, but 21 of those instances have ended in a take-on, which is seven more than any team-mate. Similarly, five carries have ended in a chance created, a figure bettered only by Son (eight) and Kane (10). 

Ndombele has managed not only to win back the trust of one of the world's most demanding coaches, he has done it by filling a role vacated by Christian Eriksen and the out-of-favour Alli and developed it in his own style. Little wonder Poyet believes he is helping Spurs "go to another level". 

The Uruguayan says, in all likelihood: "Mourinho was trying to convince him [Ndombele] last year about certain players getting [settled] very quickly and certain players need a little bit more time. 

"Because let's remember in that position we were used to seeing Eriksen or Dele Alli and now we see Ndombele most of the time, so it's a very good story and he could be a key player for them." 

Tottenham midfielder Tanguy Ndombele is open to joining Paris Saint-Germain in the future after revealing he has previously discussed a move with Kylian Mbappe.

France international Ndombele joined Tottenham from Lyon for a club-record fee reported to be around £63million in July 2019, ending long-running links with a switch to PSG.

He endured a difficult first campaign in north London but performances have improved in 2020-21, the 24-year-old featuring 26 times for Spurs in all competitions.

Ndombele remains under contract with Tottenham until 2025 and, while not actively seeking a transfer, he is not ruling out the prospect of returning to France with PSG, where ex-Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino is now in charge.

"I'm a boy from the Paris region. Wearing the Paris jersey one day? Why not. But today I'm at Tottenham, and it's going well," he told Telefoot.

"I spoke with Kylian about possibly coming to PSG - two or three years in a row we discussed it. It didn't happen and today at Tottenham it's going well, but why not in the future?"

Ndombele was left out of Tottenham's squad on occasions last season, but he has been praised by boss Jose Mourinho for working hard off the field to become a regular.

He ranks particularly high for dribbles, completing an average of 3.02 per game in the Premier League this term.

That places the midfielder behind only Christian Pulisic (3.28), Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa (3.53), Allan Saint-Maximin (4.66) and Adama Traore (5.24) among those to have played at least 10 games.

With his brace against Wycombe Wanderers in the FA Cup last Monday, Ndombele became the first Spurs player to score at least twice in a match as a substitute since Roman Pavlyuchenko against Birmingham City in May 2011.

Reflecting on a mixed time at Tottenham, Ndombele said: "It was tough. I questioned myself a lot, but now the page is turned.

"It's true that at a certain moment I wanted to leave, I didn't feel in the right place. I told them I wanted out. They didn't want me to go."

Ndombele is hopeful his form could see him earn a first appearance for France since June 2019 with the rescheduled Euro 2020 tournament on the horizon.

"Of course I miss the France team," he said. "As a competitor we want to be one of the best.

"The European Championship remains a goal in the back of my mind. If I do well at club level, why not be called up?"

Former Tottenham midfielder Gus Poyet praised Tanguy Ndombele for helping Spurs reach "another level" this season.

Ndombele struggled in his first season with the Premier League club after arriving from Ligue 1's Lyon for a reported initial fee of £55.45million (€62m).

But the midfielder has looked rejuvenated this term, helping Spurs sit sixth in the table ahead of Thursday's blockbuster clash against defending champions Liverpool.

Poyet, who played for Spurs between 2001 and 2004, said it was impressive how Ndombele had managed to turn his form around.

"From outside, this is an opinion that I hope everybody understands what I'm saying, it looks like it was not that a feeling of him being part of a [Jose] Mourinho team. It was like a conflict in there of ideas," the former Uruguay international told Stats Perform News.

"But it looks to me that this year, after pre-season, Ndombele understands his role perfectly, is playing in a more advanced position, and is really affecting the game in an incredible way.

"Which is probably what Mourinho was trying to convince him last year about certain players getting [settled] very quickly and certain players need a little bit more time.

"And the power, the quality of passing and the goals that he has scored is helping Tottenham to go to another level.

"Because let's remember in that position we were used to seeing [Christian] Eriksen or Dele Alli and now we see Ndombele most of the time, so it's a very good story and he could be a key player for them."

Ndombele scored twice in Tottenham's 4-1 FA Cup win over Wycombe on Monday, becoming the first substitute to score twice in a match for Spurs since Roman Pavlyuchenko against Birmingham City in May 2011.

He has also netted three times in his past two games in all competitions, just two fewer than he scored in his first 52 matches for the club.

Jose Mourinho doubts Dele Alli will leave Tottenham before the transfer deadline despite links with Paris Saint-Germain.

Alli has played only four times in the Premier League this season, those appearances amounting to just 75 minutes.

Having once looked like a future star of English football, the 24-year-old's career now appears to be at a major crossroads, with Mourinho seemingly unconvinced by him.

Mauricio Pochettino's appointment at PSG earlier this month seemed to be a lifeline for Alli, as a reunion with his former coach appeared to be on the cards.

But now Mourinho is not expecting any movement on that front, with Alli looking set to remain at least until the end of the season.

"I expect [Alli to stay] and I am saying that since the beginning of the window," Mourinho told reporters ahead of Thursday's clash with Liverpool.

"I was not expecting anyone to leave or expecting anyone to come. We are almost at the end of the window. I don't believe that anything will happen but it is open still."

When pressed on the matter, asked if there was still a chance Alli could leave, Mourinho added: "Football is football and the transfer window is open and sometimes unexpected things can happen but I don't expect it."

It was under Pochettino's guidance that Alli initially exploded in the Premier League, with his 63 top-flight goal involvements bettered by only six players across the attacking midfielder's first three seasons in the division.

He was proving a real weapon for Spurs in his role behind Harry Kane, and his 26 assists over the same period was the fifth highest in the Premier League – Alli found such consistency despite being significantly younger than those he was competing with.

But his form began to suffer towards the end of Pochettino's time at the club, scoring just two goals before the Argentinian was sacked last season in November 2019.

He then enjoyed something of a resurgence initially under Mourinho, adding another four goals to his tally by the end of January.

But after the Premier League's hiatus amid the coronavirus pandemic, he made just one more domestic start and has been firmly out of the picture in 2020-21.

However, Tanguy Ndombele is living proof that Mourinho's perception can be changed, with the Frenchman now a key part of the Spurs side despite his days appearing numbered last term - his 14 Premier League starts in 2020-21 is already two more than the entirety of 2019-20.

"It was him, his responsibility," Mourinho said. "We always showed him the right way and demand a lot from him. If I did anything positive with him I believe it was not to play him when he was not in real conditions to play.

"I believe that we used some matches last season to expose his fragilities at the time. His physical condition was not especially good as an example but always his responsibility.

"He trains very hard, plays very hard with the ball and without it, tactically he understands what the team needs from him. He's feeling great and feeling very positive. It's his responsibility."

Jose Mourinho says Tanguy Ndombele is a prime example that "the door is always open" for players to come in from the cold after the midfielder scored a sublime goal in Tottenham's win at Sheffield United.

Ndombele endured a disappointing first season at the London club following his big-money move from Lyon, scoring just two goals and providing four assists in 29 appearances.

The French midfielder has shown what he is capable of in the current campaign, finding the back of the net four times and laying on three goals across all competitions for a Tottenham side battling for honours on all four fronts.

Ndombele produced a moment of magic with a clever lobbed strike to score his third Premier League goal of the season – his best tally in any league campaign - in a 3-1 victory at Bramall Lane on Sunday, with Serge Aurier and Harry Kane also on target.

The classy Ndombele made 38 passes in the Blades half, more than any of his team-mates, and misplaced only nine of his 78 passes in the match, also winning 75 per cent of his duels and making three interceptions in an impressive all-round display.

Dele Alli and Harry Winks were not in the squad for the clash with the bottom-of-the-table Blades, while Gareth Bale was not called upon from the bench, but Tottenham boss Mourinho pointed to Ndombele as proof that there can always be a way back for out-of-favour players.

"I have coached for so many years, had so many players, and I have enough experience to say and to feel that when a player is not playing very well, it's his responsibility, and when a player turns things around and brings his performance level to a very high level, it's also his responsibility," said Mourinho.

"It's a great example that with me the door is always open. The door of the team is always open, and when a player is not playing he has to try to understand why and he has to try to understand how can he walk through that door. He understood, he understood.

"The goal is amazing, but I don't care about the goal, I care about the performance and the performance was magnificent and I'm really pleased that he's come to this level. He's playing very, very well."

Spurs are unbeaten in seven games and four points behind leaders Manchester United, who drew 0-0 with champions Liverpool at Anfield on Sunday, and Mourinho says it is all to play for.

"We have to do our season, we have to play our matches. We are in four competitions, we have a final [against Manchester City in the EFL Cup] to play," he said.

"Unfortunately we cannot do that [showdown with City] next month, we have to wait until end of April, we are going to fight in Europa League, we are going to fight in the FA Cup, we have a lot to take.

"I think at the end of the season, with the right results, you realise how good your season was, how better it could be, how worse it could be, and where you can improve."

Page 1 of 2
© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.