Darren Bent has urged Ryan Sessegnon to make sure he is guaranteed first-team football as Southampton plot a loan move for the Tottenham starlet.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider assistant editor Russell Edge, the former Spurs striker admits the fleet-footed winger has “regressed” in his year at the club and that he needs regular game time if he is to rediscover his past form.

The Athletic report that the Saints are among those showing the most interest in taking the 20-year-old on loan for the rest of the season after his fall down the pecking order in north London.

As revealed by Football Insider, Jose Mourinho has pulled a U-turn over letting Sessegnon leave on loan following the arrival of Sergio Reguilon, with the Portuguese boss having previously blocked his departure.

Bent insists that the youngster needs to be playing regular first-team football and warns he would face a fierce fight with Ryan Bertrand for a place in the Southampton side were he to make the move to St Mary’s.

Bent told Football Insider: “They’d just be collecting Spurs full-backs – first Walker-Peters and then him – but I really like Sessegnon, I always have done.

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“For whatever reason, Mourinho’s just not taken to him. He scored on his debut in the Champions League but he never really seemed to get a good run out in the team for whatever reason, I don’t quite know why.

“If he can go over to Southampton and get a good runout – I mean, listen, he’s going to have to bide his time because Bertrand plays – but he can play left-wing, he can play left-wing back. I really like him.

“You’re talking about a guy who a couple of years ago won every single award in the Championship, got to the Premier League with Fulham, done very, very well and if anything he’s regressed a little bit. He definitely needs to go somewhere and start playing football again regularly.”

Sessegnon has played just 12 times for Tottenham and has not featured once this season.

In other Tottenham news, Paul Robinson has been wowed as Spurs work on two marquee signings who are the “real deal”.