Pressing similarities came into thinking with Nkoudou

Georges-Kevin Nkoudou
Georges-Kevin Nkoudou
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Burnley are two places and seven points behind fifth place Spurs in the Premier League table.


And in terms of distance covered in the league this season, the Clarets aren’t lagging too far behind Tottenham at the right end either.

Sean Dyche’s side are sixth in the most recent figures, with 2,500km, with Spurs third with 2,519.5km, behind leaders Bournemouth (2,536.5km).

Spurs, like Burnley, are recognised exponents of the pressing game, and having taken Tottenham winger Georges-Kevin Nkoudou on loan for the rest of the season, Dyche hopes that work ethic will help the France Under 21 international slot right in at Turf Moor.

Nkoudou is in line to make his debut at Crystal Palace tomorrow, and asked about the similarities in work rate, Dyche admitted: “That was in the thinking. I think we all know that Pochettino’s group work, I don’t think there’s any shortage of work, whatever it is, so that is helpful.

“We’ve got a side who want to work and press and play on the front foot. He’ll have a feel of that.

“He’ll understand that in our side you do have to work, because no matter what position you play at Tottenham you are asked to work.

“But I’m not over thinking it. We’re not putting any pressure on him to come and have an instant impact.

“We’re saying come and enjoy your football, first of all and get involved with the group.

“I think it’s helpful for him that Tripps is still in contact with some of the group here. We’re open minded about it.

“He’s come in with a big smile on his face and he wants to get involved, he has trained hard and trained at the right tempo and I hope he enjoys his time here.”

Nkoudou revealed he had spoken to former Claret Kieran Trippier about Burnley, and Dyche did likewise: “Tripps said he’s a good lad, he wants to work hard for his chance, he wants to be part of a group and I think his chances had just become limited at Tottenham.

“It’s very difficult to play in any Premier League side regularly, and it’s fair to say Tottenham have got some top players, and Lamela is coming back who was doing very well before his injury.

“It opened up a situation.”

Dyche and Mauricio Pochettino get on well, but that wasn’t how the move developed: “I hope they’d trust how we work with players, but things have changed, you don’t tend to ring the managers anymore.

“A lot of clubs now have people in roles who do that sort of thing, so it’s very rare you speak manager-to-manager.

“I do with people I know, but some you know a bit and some you don’t know, so often our club will contact their club and it’s done like that.

“I didn’t speak direct to Pochettino about it and say ‘what do you think?’. I spoke to Tripps just to find out about the lad, some of our scouts knew quite a lot about him, it’s combining everything, he’s out there, he’s got a thirst to play, we’re short in the wide areas, especially with injuries, so it brings it all together.”

Dyche isn’t a huge fan of the loan system, but feels all transfers can be fraught with difficulties: “There’s risk in any player, not just loan players, that’s why recruitment is heavily spoken about, it’s difficult in any situation to make it work.

“It’s not just on loan players, I think it’s across the board.

“But I think we’re light in those areas anyway, we did try and affect it in the summer but couldn't quite get the players we wanted in.

“He’s a player we know of, he’s on our reporting system that we had to take seriously so we have.”

The 22-year-old is predominately right footed, but is able to play on either flank: “Yeah, I think he’s quite happy to, I spoke to him about it and he was happy about it.

“Like most players I think he just wants to play.

“He did very well at Marseille as we know, in visual performances and statistically.

“I think he was late in to Tottenham’s pre-season and that is difficult when you’re talking about a team who do work and those high levels of physicality.”