December 7, 2021

Mourinho praises Tottenham ‘kids’ as Scarlett becomes club’s youngest ever player

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The Portuguese head coach was pleased with the way Spurs’s next generation of stars performed during a comfortable win over Ludogorets

Jose Mourinho praised Tottenham‘s “kids” as Dane Scarlett became the club’s youngest ever player following his appearance in the Europa League.

Tottenham picked up a comfortable 4-0 home victory over Ludogorets on Thursday night to move one step closer to qualifying for the round of 32 in Europe’s second-tier competition.

Benfica loanee Carlos Vinicius hit a first-half brace to put the hosts in full command of the contest, making the most of his chance to shine with Harry Kane granted a well-earned rest ahead of Sunday’s London derby clash against Chelsea.

Harry Winks then managed to find the net from 50 yards in somewhat fortunate fashion on the hour mark, before Lucas Moura rounded off the scoring late on, with Spurs now just one win away from booking a place in the knockout stages.

Academy graduate Japhet Tanganga was drafted back into Mourinho’s squad after recovering from an injury lay-off, and teenage midfielder Harvey White was handed his senior debut against Ludogorets, while Jack Clarke made his second European appearance since returning to the club following a loan spell at Queens Park Rangers.

Scarlett was the man who shared the headlines with Winks, however, as he became the youngest player to feature in a competitive game for Tottenham in their entire history aged 16 years and 247 days.

Mourinho was delighted to see Lilywhite’s next generation of stars “make history”, as he told BT Sport post-match: “I am happy for them, some players had really nice performances.

“Japhet Tanganga had his first match after long injury, nice chance for the kids to make history. 4-0 and three points, that’s good.

“I know the kids well. Harvey White works with us every day in our squad, same as Jack Clarke, Dane Scarlett did pre-season with us. We know what they can do but it has to be the right moment and today was the right pressure for them.”

Asked to assess his side’s latest performance in the Europa League, Mourinho responded: “It was important. There is a risk of every team on six points against them.

“If that happens to qualify you need a lot of points. Normally nine points would be job done but it is not job done. You need a result but today was important. We made lots of changes but it was important to take it seriously, it was good.

“The game are important, every game is important. We don’t look to certain competitions, we look game after game.

“To play all the same players is not good for the condition and for the mentality of those who play.”

The Portuguese boss concluded by playing down the importance of this weekend’s meeting with Chelsea, as he added: “Every game is every game, in the Premier League I don’t make any difference because every game you can gain points or lose points. We don’t look to the table we look to matches.”