Kevin Phillips has claimed the transformation of Tanguy Ndombele is due to Tottenham signing their own Claude Makelele in Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg.
The 2000 European Golden Shoe winner, speaking exclusively to Football Insider correspondent Dylan Childs, claimed that the 25-year-old is bringing out the best in heavily criticised Ndombele .
The low-key Denmark international has since been ever-present for Jose Mourinho’s side in the Premier League this season, helping them to second in the table after eight games.
His arrival has seen Ndombele utilised in a more advanced position, the Frenchman having struggled last season following his club-record £60million move from Lyon.
When asked by Football Insider for his assessment of Hojbjerg’s impact on Jose Mourinho’s side, Phillips said:
“Hojbjerg gives the license to someone like a Ndombele to push on, be more offensive and get into those attacking areas.
“Every team needs a player like that. Kante did it at Leicester, Makelele at Chelsea – he was unbelievable in that role. He was that screen, that protection.
“Hojbjerg has so many qualities. He can win the ball and he can find a pass so you have to give huge credit to the player, Mourinho and his recruitment department.
“They have done their homework and identified him as a major cog in Tottenham’s team this year.”