Son Heung-min deserves bumper Spurs deal, says Mourinho

Son Heung-Min
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Updated 24 October 2020

Son Heung-min deserves bumper Spurs deal, says Mourinho

LONDON: Tottenham boss Jose Mourinho said on Friday that expects Son Heung-min to be handed a lucrative new long-term contract “sooner or later” after the South Korean’s blistering start to the season.
The 28-year-old forward, whose current deal expires in 2023, is reportedly in discussions over a bumper new deal at the Premier League club.
Son has scored nine goals in eight games this season and has also provided four assists, teaming up with Harry Kane to devastating effect.
Mourinho believes that form is likely to see him rewarded with a hefty new deal that would make him one of the club’s top earners.
“I would love that,” he said. “Son has three years of contract so it’s not like we’re in an extreme situation of everybody being worried.
“It’s more that Son loves it here. I believe that he would like to commit his future to the club for a long time.
“Everybody at the club is totally in love with this player and this boy and is trying also to make him feel part of the furniture.”
Kane and Dele Alli have taken the limelight at Spurs in recent years but Son has become one of the club’s key players.
“He cannot do more than what he does. Season after season after season, Sonny is showing how good he is,” Mourinho said.
“Of course, the better the team is, the easier it is for the players to emerge. But Sonny is Sonny and everyone knows what he needs to do now to go to the next step: nothing.”

Everybody at the club is totally in love with this boy and is trying also to make him feel part of the furniture.

Jose Mourinho, Manager of Tottenham Hotspur

Son, who scored after coming off the bench in Thursday’s 3-0 Europa League win over LASK, is likely to return to the starting lineup for Monday’s trip to Burnley.
The Clarets have taken just one point from their opening four games but Mourinho is not being lulled into a false sense of security.
He believes Sean Dyche’s side will be well clear of danger toward the end of the season.
“You will feel how strong they are by March, April when lots of teams will be fighting for relegation, and they will be already safe,” he said.
“They will be already eighth, ninth, 10th, comfortable in the table. This is Burnley, so the fact they only have one point in this moment — they have played one match less and the fact they have one point doesn’t tell me much.”


Iniesta fires Japan’s Vissel Kobe into last 16

Updated 26 November 2020

Iniesta fires Japan’s Vissel Kobe into last 16

  • They are now five points ahead of Guangzhou and Suwon Samsung Bluewings

DOHA: Andres Iniesta scored his first goal in the Asian Champions League as Vissel Kobe powered their way to the last-16 with a dominant 3-1 win over Fabio Cannavaro's Guangzhou Evergrande in their Group G clash on Wednesday.

The Spain and Barcelona legend fired a right-footed shot from the center of the box in the 84th minute to help the Japanese side consolidate their position at the top of their group with two wins from as many matches.

They are now five points ahead of Guangzhou and Suwon Samsung Bluewings and assured of a spot in the knockout phase after the group was reduced to three teams following Malaysian side Johor Darul Ta'zim's withdrawal from the tournament.

In another match on Wednesday, Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors pipped Sydney FC 1-0 in Group H with Na Sung-eun scoring in the 44th minute.

It was the Australian side's third defeat in four matches while Jeonbuk revived their hopes with their first victory.

Iniesta, who was declared MVP of the match, had been an influential presence for Vissel Kobe throughout the encounter with his quick thinking and crisp passing, and that reflected in their first goal in the 44th minute at the Khalifa International Stadium.

The Spanish veteran dashed his way up on the left flank to control a long diagonal pass and after advancing further turned around near the goalline to tap the ball onto the path of the advancing Kyogo Furuhashi who struck with a clean, low shot from close range.

Furuhashi's personal joy at scoring lasted only 10 minutes as the forward first conceded a corner and then watched in horror as his attempted clearance from the resultant kick found his own net to give Guangzhou the equalizer.

Cannavaro made three substitutions in a desperate bid for victory after having drawn their opening game against Suwon Samsung Bluewings. But although the two-time champions enjoyed a couple of brief purple patches during which they had the Kobe defence under pressure, the goal they were looking for never materialized.

Vissel Kobe regained the lead in the 74th minute when Douglas, who had just come in five minutes prior, took advantage of a great back-heel from Daigo Nishi and blasted the ball home.

Brazil-born Elekson, now known as Ai Kesen, had a goal disallowed for off-side on eight minutes and when Iniesta struck two minutes later, it extended Cannavaro's misery in Doha.

"The result is bad. We tried but I know that something in my team is not clear. I don't know if they are afraid to play or they are not confident anymore," the Italian complained after the match.

"I need to try and do my best to give them the confidence to play. This is my job. I know they are very good players, and we can do much, much, much better."

Vissel Kobe had landed in Doha after a string of disappointing results back home, conceding a whopping 58 goals in 33 league matches and losing five games in a row.

But their coach Atsuhiro Miura was basking in joy on Wednesday, saying he was ready with a game plan against a side packed with several Brazilians.

"Guangzhou is a very strong side, they have several good Brazilian players but we analysed how they play and how to prevent them from playing to their strengths," said Miura.

"We did everything well and everything went how we wanted it to. That's why we got this result."