Photo: Ismail Azzaoui in action for Tottenham's under-21 side, Pochettino watching

Belgium Flag

Ismail Azzaoui featured in Tottenham's under-21 victory over Everton.

Tottenham under-21 boss Ugo Ehiogu showed his faith in Belgian youth international Ismail Azzaoui by starting him in Monday's season opener against Everton.

Azzaoui signed from Anderlecht a season ago, going onto play a prominent role in Tottenham's run to the FA Youth Cup semi-finals.

He was rewarded with his under-21 debut last season, playing three matches but all as a substitute - and all three ended in defeat.

Monday's fixture was different, Azzaoui was picked from the start and Tottenham won 4-1, with the 17-year-old winger featuring for 64 minutes.

Head coach Mauricio Pochettino was watching on from the sidelines, also keeping a close eye on Hugo Lloris who played in goal, and Alex Pritchard who netted the opener as the former Brentford loanee steps up his recovery from a minor knee injury sustained with England's under-21 side.

Not an individual matchwinner on this occasion, Azzaoui acquitted himself well and did not look out of place on his first start at under-21 level, unafraid to run with the ball and take players on.

The best he can hope for this season is surely a place in the Capital One Cup or Europa League squads, but there is more to be done first as he adjusts to under-21 football. If his early adaptation and rapid progress so far shows, Spurs could have a gem on their hands, and it will not be long until he is influencing and marking his mark on games.

Register for TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch