Newcastle star Kieran Trippier names Dembele as best he’s played with
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Newcastle star Kieran Trippier has named Mousa Dembele as the best player he’s ever played with. The duo were team-mates at Tottenham for three-and-a-half years, with the Belgium international ultimately leaving the club to move to China at the start of 2019 before Trippier headed to Atletico Madrid six months later.
Earlier this week, Trippier assembled his dream five-a-side team as he appeared on Rio Ferdinand’s Vibe with Five YouTube show. And the right-back immediately told Ferdinand that he would have Dembele in his team as he’s the “best player I’ve ever played with.”
A shocked Ferdinand replied: “You’ve played with Harry Kane, [Luis] Suarez, all these guys.” And Trippier added: “Yeah, no, Mousa Dembele. Obviously I’d put Harry Kane in that bracket but, for me, he’s an absolute magician. Just absolutely frightening Rio. On the ball, without the ball, he had everything. He had absolutely everything – incredible.”
Dembele, who won 82 caps for Belgium, became a Premier League star when he moved from AZ Alkmaar to Fulham in 2010. He helped the Cottagers finish eighth in the top-flight table during his maiden campaign in west London and played for them in the Europa League the following campaign.
His fine performances at Craven Cottage secured him a move across the capital after Tottenham splashed out £15million to secure his services in 2012. And during his six-and-a-half seasons in north London, the midfielder bagged 10 goals and 12 assists in 249 appearances.
He played either Champions League or Europa League football during every season with Tottenham and lit up the Premier League week after week thanks to his technical ability and physical strength.
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Dembele netted Spurs £11m when he left the club to join Guangzhou City and reportedly tripled his Premier League salary in China after being handed wages of £150,000 per week. The 35-year-old then called time on his playing career a year ago before heading back to Belgium.
Dembele has had his fair share of proponents over the years and was previously labelled as a “genius” by his ex-Spurs mentor Mauricio Pochettino. “I always say, ‘Mousa, when I write my book I will say you are one of the genius players I have been lucky to meet,’” the Argentinian said.
“They are [Diego] Maradona, Ronaldinho, Jay-Jay Okocha, Ivan de la Pena and Mousa Dembele. We’ve always told him that if we had taken him at 18 or 19 years old, he would have become one of the best players in the world.”
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