When Tottenham welcome West Ham to White Hart Lane on the 19th they’ll have their club record signing available again after suspension, but some don’t really want him back.
Moussa Sissoko has been criticized by fans and media alike since his £30 million move from Newcastle to Spurs on the last day of the transfer window. He’s struggled to make a positive impact on the pitch, and has now been spending a lot of time off of it after being suspended for an elbow against Bournemouth.
Sissoko has never been one who is afraid to speak his mind to the press, and he’s opened up a bit to Sky Sports on his start with Spurs. He knows he needs to do better.
"It's true that there has been a lot of mishaps; my late signing, my lack of preparation for the season, my blow to the head against Middlesbrough, and this suspension," Sissoko said ahead of France's match against Sweden on Friday.
“When I arrived, I felt that my team-mates were aware of the amount of my transfer. I was not just any player, but I ignore all of this. I was not at the top when I signed, but that's normal. They all worked well this summer while I had a mini-preparation.”
“The suspension fell at the wrong time. In addition, it was something involuntary. Even the opposition player said. I had to work harder than others in training and some double sessions to keep up.”
“All that now is behind me. I have come out, grown up. All the lights are green.”
It’s entirely fair that Sissoko’s late signing would mean that he hasn’t settled in at the beginning of the season. It sounds like he’s determined now to make amends for some poor performances.
It is definitely interesting to see him say that he felt like his Spurs team-mates were aware of his transfer fee. Hopefully that didn’t lead to any animosity or difficulty settling in with the guys.
You can tell he’s also still a little salty about the suspension for the elbow on Harry Arter.
But as for a lack of starts in his first couple months under Mauricio Pochettino, Sissoko understands that’s just how things work at the club.
"Tottenham is the biggest club I have known. You must convince in every game, every training session. But competition never scared me and the coach is correct.”
"It means playing the best players of the moment, for the team, always comes first. If we want to win something late in the season then that is how we can get there."
Biggest club he’s ever known, in your face Toulouse and Newcastle!
Some Spurs fans have already given up on our new signing, and he’s turned into a scapegoat of sorts. But there are precedents for big-money Spurs signings coming in and not having immediate success. Erik Lamela is just one that comes to mind.
We could do with some patience here, but frustration is understandable because we could also do with some impact performances from Sissoko.