Opinion: Tottenham’s biggest dilemma – 23-year-old is Mourinho’s toughest challenge

Jose Mourinho has inherited a sublimely gifted Tottenham Hotspur squad – one with deficiencies – but a playing group full of international stars.

The Spurs boss has a job on his hands to get the players firing the way that Mauricio Pochettino did, but one man in particular is the manager’s biggest challenge.

Tanguy Ndombele became Tottenham’s record signing when he moved to North London in the summer from Lyon.

The France international was a player that Pochettino wanted. He excited the Spurs masses after Youtube clips exalted the midfielder’s guile, balance and work-rate.

The next Dembele. A man capable of filling the void.

However, to say that Ndombele has been a disappointment in his first season at Tottenham is an understatement.

There have been glimpses of brilliance at times from the Frenchman, especially in the draw against Norwich at Carrow Road at Christmas, but they have been fleeting.

For most of the campaign the 23-year-old has either been injured, worried about getting injured or seemingly not interested.

Ndombele is clearly a player that could be an important piece of the jigsaw for Tottenham if he was fit, engaged and in the right mindset.

But, the worry is that Mourinho is not the man to mould the midfielder into the player Spurs need, or to motivate him to play to his best.

The money spent on Ndombele could have landed a sublime alternative, someone like Jack Grealish and already there will be some regret on how the Frenchman’s time in London has panned out.

Here’s hoping that Mourinho is up to the task of turning this talented-but-troubled midfield man’s fortunes around.