By Football Insider speaking to Kevin Campbell

16th Apr, 2020 | 11:58am

Exclusive: Bruce can't believe L'Equipe's unexpected Ndombele claim

Alex Bruce has claimed that he will be “very surprised” if Barcelona make a move for Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Tanguy Ndombele this summer.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the former Hull City defender argued that recent controversies involving the 23-year-old and Spurs manager Jose Mourinho show just how highly he is thought of in north London.

The Portuguese boss came in for criticism after hosting a one-on-one training session with the Frenchman on Hadley Common last week – clearly flouting the government’s Coronavirus lockdown regulations.

A subsequent report from L’Equipe suggested that the club record signing has grown tired of Mourinho’s coaching methods, and added the shock claim that Barcelona are willing to offer him an escape route from the Premier League at the end of the season.

But Bruce is unconvinced by the update.

Speaking to Football Insider, he said: “I think the fact that Mourinho is having one-on-one sessions with him tells you that he obviously thinks highly of the lad because otherwise he wouldn’t have bothered his backside.

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“He’s clearly trying to show him what he wants from him and what is required of him to be a Jose Mourinho player.

“The lad’s got ability, and he is the club’s record signing – they obviously see something in him.

“He hasn’t been there very long so I’d be very surprised if Barcelona came in for him, because he’s not exactly ripped up trees just yet.

“However, he has got bags of potential, hence why Tottenham have gone and played such a large amount of money for him.

“If they can get him playing, he can be a real asset to the team.”

Ndombele has struggled to capture his best form in England since making a £54 million switch from Lyon last summer.

So far this term, he has registered just two goals and four assists from 27 outings across all competitions, and hasn’t played a full 90 minutes of Premier League action since December.

In other Tottenham news, ‘He’s worth £90m…in the top 3 players in PL’-  Bruce dazzled by Spurs chase.