Jose Mourinho has piled the praise on Tottenham Hotspur starlet Ryan Sessegnon, boldly claiming that he has all the tools to become as good as Premier League legend Ashley Cole. The Tottenham boss has however thrown caution to the wind, warning that the England U21 international is not ready to slot into full-back, despite the long term setback to Ben Davies.
Jose Mourinho Hails ‘Fantastic’ Ryan Sessegnon and Sees Similarities With Ashley Cole
Ryan Sessegnon Has a Positional Conundrum
The positional versatility of the 19-year-old has led to the questioning of what his best position may be. Mauricio Pochettino, the man who brought him to Spurs in the summer, previously admitted that he hadn’t been able to decide what Sessegnon’s best position was.
Despite only being able to work with Sessegnon for a short period of time, Jose Mourinho is well-informed of the youngster’s talents, having attempted to sign him from Fulham as Manchester United boss.
“I think Ryan is absolutely fantastic, I have known him since a kid in Fulham. When he comes to the first team in the Premier League, it is different to the Championship,” he told the Standard.
“I think in this moment he is a winger on the left, can also play on the right, can learn progressively and even developing physically, which he is doing.
“Even from the last time I saw him and the first time I met him when I came here he is already different physically”.
A Big Talent, With a Big Comparison
Although Jose Mourinho has suggested that he currently sees Sessegnon as a winger, he has also hinted that the youngster can transition into a competent full-back. The Portuguese has not been afraid to lay down a bold statement, claiming that Sessegnon can become as good as three-time Premier League champion, Ashley Cole.
He said: “I think Ryan can play as a left-back. Probably the best left-back in the last decade was Ashley Cole, in spite of him being from two enemy clubs, but he was fantastic. But Ryan has lots of similarities with Ashley, and he can learn how to defend.”
Ben Davies’ long-term ankle setback may have opened a potential door for Sessegnon to step in at left-full back, but Mourinho has played down the youngster’s chances of filling in.
“We have options. Danny Rose is the natural left-back, Jan Vertonghen can do it, he did it already for the club and for the national team. In extra emergency, I think even Aurier could give us a hand playing there.
“In the future, I think he [Sessegnon] can be [a left-back] but in this moment he is not ready to play as a left-back.”