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Sunday, 2 April 2017

It takes hard work to become a Pochettino genius


Mousa Dembele has been told by every coach what a great player he is and how he could be so much better. Les Ferdinand revealed that they used to tell him he could be good enough to play for Real Madrid. Dembele though never improved, he remained at the same level, a bloody good level, but less than he was capable of.

That is what happens when you drop into your comfort zone, where each day is no longer a challenge to be the best you can be. There are 24 hours in the day for everybody, from a billionaire to a homeless person, all have the same 24 hours to make decisions and do what they decide to do.

Nobody can tell Dembele to change, but each has to try to find his motivation, because by finding that you can unlock the potential within. I remember writing an article before the beginning of last season when Dembele had been left on the bench for much of the previous season.

That was done to get inside him, to challenge him and it worked. In an interview he said it was nobody else's fault but that it was his responsibility. That signalled to me that he might have found the mentality he needed, great words but the proof was in the pudding. How would he perform on a day-to-day basis on the training ground and how would he perform on the pitch.

Well we all know the answer to that now, he was one of the best players in Europe last season and has been brilliant again this season. Mauricio Pochettino calls him his genius as he revealed to the press in his pre-game press conference.

“I always say to him, ‘Mousa, when I write my book, you will be one of my genius players that I have been lucky enough to meet. One was Maradona; also Ronaldinho, Okocha and Iván de la Peña – he was a genius, too – and then Mousa. We always tell Mousa that if we had taken him at 18 or 19, he would have become one of the best players in the world.”

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  1. Dembele is the exact same player he was the first year we signed him. Still an absolute boss, still doesn't score. I realise that doesn't fit the narrative but its reality.

    1. It's not about fitting the narrative. It's about a blindingly obvious change in his effectiveness on the pitch.

      If it is not so obvious to you then I'm sure if you find some stats for him that cover the two distinct periods the truth will be a lot harder to miss.

      There was no time when he lacked the talent and potential, but that's really the point, isn't it?


  2. What does that have to do with anything? If you're ace at what you do, great. It's why he's been shifted back from striker to the role he holds today. Doing what he does, no one needs him to be scoring. He tears team shapes apart, opening up the attacking third for everyone else - among his plethora of other brilliant traits.



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