The French midfielder was a key player in Spurs’ win over Juventus, but his new manager is keen to manage fans’ expectations early on in his career
Mauricio Pochettino has urged Tottenham supporters to be patient with record signing Tanguy Ndombele despite his impressive debut against Juventus on Sunday.
The France international joined the club earlier this month in a deal worth £63 million (€70m), eclipsing the £42m spent on Davinson Sanchez in 2017.
Ndombele was introduced for Erik Lamela shortly after the hour mark in the International Champions Cup clash in Singapore and made an immediate impact.
He teed up Lucas Moura for an equaliser within just a minute, which set the scene for Harry Kane to score a spectacular stoppage-time goal from the halfway line to seal a 3-2 win.
Pochettino was impressed by the 22-year-old’s contribution but was quick to manage fans’ expectations.
“Ndombele is a player that has the capacity to do what he did today,” he told a media conference.
“But still it’s too far away in his adaptation. It’s only been one week with us.
“Today he played more than I expected because our plan was to play him for only 15 minutes, but with the tempo in the second half it was good to give him 30 minutes.
“We are happy with him but still we don’t expect too much. We know his talent and what he can add to the team but it’s step by step and we will try not to put too much pressure on him.
“Everything is new for him but I think with the first touch of the ball he started to show his quality.
“It was amazing and you can see when he runs something can happen.
“He has the capacity to add to the team different things and I hope during the season he can help the team achieve all that they want.”
The game was played at a more frenetic pace than Pochettino would normally like at this stage of pre-season, but he acknowledges that it will have done wonders for his players’ fitness levels.
“I think they’re very good games, very competitive,” he added.
“To be honest, we are very sure in our preparation. This has always been a period that we used to play friendlies against League Two sides or games in our training ground.
“Of course, we are happy because the atmosphere when you beat a team like Juventus is fantastic.
“The result, though, is not important; it’s about the performance and how we are doing in our fitness. That is our priority for the rest of pre-season.”
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