Tottenham Hotspur supporters will need no reminding just how poor Daniel Levy’s £63m signing of Tanguy Ndombele back in the summer of 2019 has panned out for the club, with the 25-year-old arguably having proven to be one of the biggest errors in the transfer market made by any club in the Premier League era.
Indeed, while many involved with Spurs were incredibly excited about their side landing the France international a little over three years ago – something that was hardly surprising after the central midfielder enjoyed an impressive campaign with Olympique Lyon the season prior – this early anticipation quickly turned into disappointment.
Having said that, after bagging a goal on his Premier League debut in a 3-1 victory over Aston Villa, as well as registering an assist in a 2-2 draw with Manchester City in the very next fixture, it initially appeared as if Ndombele and Tottenham were something of a match made in heaven.
However, with a series of knocks seeing the Frenchman start just 14 further league fixtures in 2019/22, as well as the 25-year-old scoring just one further goal and providing one more assist in the top flight that year, Spurs’ huge outlay on the midfielder was already beginning to look like a big mistake.
Things slightly did slightly improve for the £200k-per-week talent over his 33 Premier League fixtures in 2020/21, scoring three goals, registering two assists and creating five big chances for his teammates, with these returns seeing Ndombele earn a respectable SofaScore match rating of 6.90 – ranking him as Spurs’ joint ninth-best player in the league that term.
However, the seven-cap international’s displays over his nine league appearances in 2021/22 appeared to well and truly put the final nail in the coffin in his career at Spurs, with the £26m-rated man averaging an extremely disappointing SofaScore match rating of 6.58 – ranking him as Tottenham’s second-worst performer in the top flight last time out.
This led to Spurs’ newly appointed manager, Antonio Conte, shipping the player who Jamie Carragher dubbed “like an old man” out on loan to Lyon for the second half of the 21/22 campaign, before once again loaning the Frenchman out to SS Napoli for the duration of the 2022/23 season.
However, if the £32.8m Ndombele has cost Tottenham in wages over the 164 weeks he spent in north London between his July 2019 signing and his August 2022 move to Napoli was not bad enough, as a result of his astronomical salary, Levy is still reported to be contributing £89k-per-week in order for the 25-year-old not to play for the club.
This means that, over the course of his season-long loan in Italy, Ndombele will have cost Spurs a further £4m in wages, despite having not kicked a ball for Conte’s side for 45 weeks – taking his total cost in salary to a staggering £36.8m by the end of the campaign.
As such, it is clear for all to see that, while Ndombele’s arrival in north London was very much Levy’s own doing, the 25-year-old midfielder has been rinsing the club’s chairman for 209 weeks – all with two years set to run on his contract at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.