Antonio Conte praises Pape Matar Sarr after Tottenham lose to Arsenal
Conte was without his key man in midfield as Rodrigo Bentancur was unable to make it back in time for yesterday’s clash.
Yves Bissouma was named amongst the substitutes but had been struggling with an ankle injury after missing Tottenham’s FA Cup win over Portsmouth last weekend.
The Italian turned to Sarr over Oliver Skipp after the 20-year-old had put in some eye-catching displays over the last two games.
Despite falling to a 2-0 defeat at the hands of their bitter rivals yesterday, Conte was impressed by Sarr’s display in the middle of the park.
Conte praises Sarr
Conte spoke to Spurs Play after the game and was asked about Sarr’s display in what was his first ever start in the Premier League.
“He showed a great personality. He played a good game,” he said.
“In my opinion, he showed to be a top player. We are talking about a player who is only 20-years-old but he deserved to have this chance.
“Bissouma was last game, if you remember in the FA Cup, in the end he stopped himself with his ankle. This week he struggled with his ankle. So today the choice was between Pape Sarr and Skippy.”
Sarr performed well for a youngster who was making his full Premier League debut against the best side in the division.
But the Senegal international was up against it from the off as he and Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg were outnumbered in midfield.
Tottenham certainly missed Bentancur’s influence in the middle of the park yesterday and despite Sarr’s promising display, Conte will be hoping the Uruguayan doesn’t spend too much time on the sidelines.
Sarr will be delighted that he is finally getting his opportunity though and he seems to be above Skipp in the pecking order at the moment.
It will be interesting to see how Conte utilises the youngster once Bentancur is back in the side, especially with Hojbjerg’s recent dip in form.
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