Mauricio Pochettino has thanked Moussa Sissoko for his professionalism after Tottenham beat Newcastle United to secure Champions League qualification on Wednesday night.
Sissoko was handed a start against his former club with Eric Dier and Mousa Dembele both absent through injury.
Pochettino could have changed the system and played Toby Alderweireld in a back three, but his decision to put Sissoko in demonstrated the faith he has in the Frenchman.
The 28-year-old, who joined Spurs for £30 million in the summer of 2016, didn’t have the best of nights.
But he was arguably no worse than anyone else on the pitch as Tottenham hobbled over the line to qualify for the Champions League for a third successive season.
After the game, Pochettino was keen to single out Sissoko for his professionalism throughout the campaign.
“I am so proud about all the players because today for me one of the best was Moussa Sissoko,” said the Spurs boss (via football.london).
“I want to say thank you for how professional he was all season. Not too many people recognise him but I think he was fantastic today.
“Players like Wanyama who haven’t played too much, they were injured and today when you need to win they were there on the pitch giving their best.
“When we talk about the squad and how important it is in the season to respect them and treat them in the right way and today they were present and they played so well and they are part of the success of the team to finish in the top four for the third consecutive time.”
Doubts will remain over Sissoko’s ability and there are certain to be questions marks around his future this summer – I wouldn’t be surprised to see him leave at the end of the season.
But it’s obvious he is a player Pochettino trusts, and that’s clearly something the Argentinian values.