Ray Houghton wants Tottenham star Dembele to show more confidence on the field of play.
The former Liverpool midfielder said: “I would like to see more from Mousa Dembele, I’m a big fan of his, but I don’t feel he’s had the greatest time at Tottenham. He just looks like he’s lost his confidence. There were a few times in the first half [v Anderlecht] where he’s gone at their midfielder and sort of stuttered, because he doesn't know where to go. He should be trying to play one and two touch, using his pace and strength to get beyond his opposite number, get into good positions and get a few strikes on goal.”
Dembele was given the chance to impress Mauricio Pochettino on Thursday, continuing in the starting XI after a strong performance against Liverpool last weekend.
Playing in the holding roles of a 4-2-3-1 system, Dembele was dominating against the Reds, and although it is not his natural position, the Belgian midfielder suggested he had a future in Pochettino’s side.
He was rightfully given another chance to start against Anderlecht, but Dembele looked a shadow of his former self against the Belgian side, failing to control possession of the ball or have any real attacking threat.
This performance was one which reminded fans that Dembele has never really impressed since moving to White Hart Lane, and Houghton has admitted that he wants to see the midfielder start to show confidence on the field.
He wants to see an attacking threat from Dembele, making runs from deep into the opposition area, and actually taking opponents on to create goalscoring opportunities, rather than just seeing him recycle possession every single time he gets the ball.
Dembele is playing for his future at White Hart Lane, and until he starts to show some sort of threat on a more consistent basis, it is hard to imagine Pochettino wanting to keep him around for much longer.