Eric Dier and Harry Winks started in the middle of the park for Tottenham Hotspur yesterday.

It has been a tough old road for Moussa Sissoko at Tottenham Hotspur and whilst the club has seemingly declined during these last 18 months, he has blossomed into a top player.

But on Saturday, Sissoko’s new manager Jose Mourinho opted to start Harry Winks and Eric Dier in the middle of the park ahead of the Frenchman, as Spurs recorded a much-needed 3-2 win over West Ham.

Mourinho stated that he preferred Dier’s positional play, from a defensive standpoint, hence why he started, and he also wanted another player to complement the Englishmen so he selected Winks because of his passing range. He also stated that Sissoko is ‘very different’ to his needs. 

“What made me [start Winks and Dier] was the positional play of the four attacking players,” Mourinho told BBC Sport. “I needed one midfielder that was more positional and I needed one midfield that was more a passer of the ball.

“Of course, when I see Moussa, he is a very good player, but he is very different than my needs. I need that stability from Dier and I need the kid to move the ball faster, also positionally and also to find the attacking players in the positions we want them to find the ball.” 

When Dier was on the teamsheet on Saturday lunchtime, not many people were surprised because he is a Mourinho type player and someone who the Portuguese has spoken highly of before. 

Therefore, it wouldn’t be a surprise if Dier now becomes a regular under Mourinho, as someone like Winks is better suited to his fellow Englishmen because of his calmness and tidiness on the ball.

So, it wouldn’t be a surprise if in these coming weeks, Sissoko, who is a popular figure amongst fans, sees his game time reduced. 

Whenever a new manager comes in, there is always a player that perhaps didn’t play much beforehand who ends up thriving, and someone who was once thriving then finds themselves not playing much.

But still Sissoko, who came off the bench at the London Stadium, still has the capabilities of player various roles for Mourinho in the team, which he should no doubt like.   

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