By Noel Whelan

5th Oct, 2021 | 6:00pm

Pundit digs at Lo Celso for not turning up after he defied club orders at Tottenham

Noel Whelan has claimed Giovani Lo Celso must do more to force his way into the Tottenham side.

The former Leeds striker, speaking exclusively to Football Insider, insisted Spurs need the Argentine to turn up and produce the goods far more often than he does.

Tanguy Ndombele was preferred by manager Nuno Espirito Santo in the number 10 role for Tottenham’s 2-1 win over Aston Villa on Sunday – with Dele Alli and Lo Celso, both 25, languishing among the substitutes.

The Argentine midfielder has started just once in the Premier League this season, playing 62 minutes in the 3-0 loss to Chelsea.

Lo Celso and teammate Cristian Romero defied club orders to join up with the Argentina national side last month.

The pair recieved “hefty fines” after the incident, according to Sky Sports.

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Whelan insisted Lo Celso had to improve in order to live up to his predecessor Eriksen amidst a midfield “power struggle” at the club.

“Lo Celso is the one who came in to replace Eriksen in that number 10 position,” he told Football Insider‘s Ewan Kingsbury.

“He was the natural successor.

“He needs to do more to force his way into the side. Again, you see the quality but only in glimpses.

“You need that consistency. Number 10 players are your special players.

“They get you assists and control the game in those three-quarter areas to link up with the front three.

“There’s a real power struggle there to find out who is the best in that position.”

Lo Celso joined Tottenham permanently from Real Betis in 2020 after making his initial loan permanent for a reported £27.2million.

He has contributed just eight goals and five assists across 73 games in all competitions for the club.

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