Despite his somewhat poor performance, Pedro Porro was ready to go straight into the starting XI on his Tottenham debut, Cristian Stellini insists.
After a month-long chase, Spurs signed Porro from Sporting CP at the end of the January transfer window, and the 23-year-old was thrown straight into the starting lineup for Saturday’s trip to the King Power Stadium to face Leicester.
Things didn’t go well, to say the least, with his side losing 4-1 and the opponents getting in behind him a number of times, exposing his defensive frailties. Given how much he struggled, many feel he wasn’t ready to start a Premier League match from the off, but assistant manager Stellini disagrees.
“Pedro, we think he was ready to play and for sure he’s ready to play in this league because he’s a great player with experience,” he said after the match. But we know also it’s not easy, changing leagues and changing the type of football. You need time. He can react with the team and the team needs players like Pedro. [He] needs time to play in this type of league.”
Stellini has been leading the side with Conte recovering from an operation, but his compatriot returned to the touchline for the Leicester game. The assistant manager feels that’s good for the players, but wants to ensure the boss focuses on his recovery.
“It’s good for all the team and everyone to have Antonio back,” he stated. “It’s good for him but he needs to be careful and he can’t use all his energy. We have to step up and take that place.”