Tanguy Ndombele signed for Tottenham Hotspurs from Lyon in the summer of 2019 for a club-record fee, a figure which still holds. But amidst the managerial incomings and outgoings he has failed to nail down his spot in the starting eleven. New Spurs boss Nuno Espirito Santo did not pick him while the midfielder’s future was in doubt but now that he has confirmed his stay at the club, he is starting to put some game time under his belt.
Tottenham’s form in the Premier League is not exactly what they would be hoping for at this point in the season. They have four wins and three losses from seven games, grabbing twelve points along the way. Their striking pair of Harry Kane and Son Heung-min haven’t really gotten off to the best of the start this season as is evident by Tottenham’s tally of six goals this season. This season Spurs have lacked a driving force in the midfield and Ndombele could be the answer to their midfield worries.
Ndombele is a technical and creative player, something Spurs have been lacking in the midfield. He is capable of out of the box thinking and their opposition has a hard time dealing with him. Despite all that he is still prone to many errors and his game is still far from perfect. He has also been a less reliable option because of the injuries that have plagued him in the recent seasons.
In the recent games, he has been played in multiple positions. So far, Nuno has used him out wide on the left midfield and more recently in their win against Aston Villa in a more attacking role.
Let’s go through his stats from last season and from the few games that he has been a part of this season to understand if he can solve Tottenham Hotspurs’ midfield worries.
Last season Ndombele made thirty-three appearances in the Premier League. The majority of his attacking and creativity metrics fared better than the league median average. He ranked highly in terms of dribbles per 90, offensive duels per 90 and successive attacking actions percentage.
Ndombele’s pass receive location indicates the areas of the pitch where he drops to receive passes. He is extensively present in both the opponent half as well as his defensive half. He often drops deep in his own half during transitions.
His heat map displays the areas of the pitch where he is most active in. The red zones indicate that he is most active in the central areas and in the half-spaces in the opponent half. His impressive work rate is evident from his heat map.
Despite his limited appearances this season, he has fared higher than the league median average in terms of the majority of the attacking metrics. He has especially been most effective in offensive duels per 90 and successive attacking actions.
Considering the limited number of opportunities he has gotten this season. He has been active in both opponent and his own defensive half to receive his passes.
Ndombele’s heat map indicates his impressive work rate in just three appearances this season. So far, he has been most active in central areas of the pitch, half-spaces in the opponent half and his own defensive half.
Ndombele still has a long way before he is transformed into a complete player, although his stats indicate that he is moving in the right direction. After his brilliant performances in the recent games, Nuno would probably start relying on him more and more in the midfield as the season moves forward, provided that his fitness issues do not plague him.