Juan Foyth earned his first appearance since the arrival of Jose Mourinho as Tottenham manager, as he came into the side to play 90 minutes in the defeat to Bayern Munich in midweek.
Spurs suffered a 3-1 away loss in Germany in the final group stage match of the Champions League, but they had already qualified for the knockout rounds in the runners-up position.
Foyth was one of six players drafted into the starting XI on Wednesday night and he had a busy time defending against the Bundesliga outfit.
The versatile 21-year-old partnered Toby Alderweireld at centre-back and had made some strong blocks.
He’s a highly-rated defender that can also fill in at right-back, but has only played five senior games all season across all competitions.
Mourinho picked the Argentina international out as a positive after the Bayern defeat and claims he learned a lot about him.
“I give you clearly a positive example because the positive examples are easier. Today I learned a lot about Foyth. Didn’t play one minute with me until today and I learned more in these 90 minutes than in two or three weeks of work without playing,” Mourinho said in his post-match interview with BT Sport 2 (11 December).
After Mourinho’s glowing verdict on Foyth, could it possibly be a verdict moving forward for him?
The youngster has to aim to get more minutes in the first team, as he’s now reaching a pivotal stage of his career where he needs to start racking up experience and improving on the job.
It sounds like good things may be around the corner for him under Mourinho, but on the flip side there is serious competition from teammates Alderweireld, Jan Vertonghen and Davinson Sanchez for a centre-back position.
Foyth has had to be patient win around his new manager, but should be a little more confident after hearing Mourinho’s interview.