Jamie Redknapp comments on Tottenham midfield duo Sissoko and Hojbjerg

Sam Preston December 4, 2020
Jamie Redknapp comments on Tottenham midfield duo Sissoko and Hojbjerg
Photo by Tottenham Hotspur FC/Tottenham Hotspur FC via Getty Images

Sky Sports pundit Jamie Redknapp claims Tottenham’s football under Jose Mourinho isn’t pretty but it’s effective.

He highlighted the use of midfield duo Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg and Moussa Sissoko as man-markers on the Sky Sports Pitch to Post podcast.

Redknapp believes it’s not an especially skilful pairing, but Mourinho likes what they do for the good of the team.

Mourinho’s side have played on the counter attack a lot, especially in recent games against Manchester City and Chelsea.

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“Jose’s got them working hard for each other defensively,” said Redknapp. “It’s not pretty – I don’t care what Tottenham fans out there (say); you can’t turn round and say it’s enjoyable to watch.

“It’s not expansive, but it’s winning. They sit ever so deep. The game against Chelsea, he was playing Sissoko and Hojbjerg, who’s done a really good job since he’s come.

“He’s said to them, defensively, you’ve got real jobs to do. That in itself is an art form, not many midfielders would give up themselves like Sissoko is right now, man-marking people and running back into their own box.

“It’s not exciting, but it’s working. It’s not a midfield that’s that skilful, but it’s a midfield that he likes.”

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Redknapp is perhaps being a little harsh on Mourinho. His counter-attacking style has been thrilling at times this season.

In recent big games, he has set up cautiously, but always with a threat to try and grab a goal on the break.

Hojbjerg and Sissoko being so disciplined allows Heung-min Son and Steven Bergwijn to get closer to Harry Kane – that’s a real threat to any team.

Redknapp is right to point out that Mourinho prioritises results over style – but will many Spurs fans care if they get their hands on a major trophy this season?

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Sam Preston is an NCTJ gold standard news and sports journalist who studied with the Press Association. He also has a 2:1 law with French law degree from the University of Birmingham, which included a year studying at Bordeaux Montaigne University. He is an FA Level 1 football coach who appeared on the BBC’s Victoria Derbyshire show in 2018 and has also written digital football content and match-day programme pieces for Colchester United, Mansfield Town and Stockport County.