Forgotten Spurs star's season goes from 'disastrous' to 'immense' in Championship

The Tottenham Hotspur youth product had been enduring a season to forget but is now winning plaudits.
Tanganga has made 50 appearances for Spurs but not featured in nearly a year.Tanganga has made 50 appearances for Spurs but not featured in nearly a year.
Tanganga has made 50 appearances for Spurs but not featured in nearly a year.

Forgotten Tottenham Hotspur star Japhet Tanganga turned heads with a 'top quality' performance for Millwall as the Championship strugglers pulled off a shock win over Southampton in Neil Harris' first game back in charge of the club.

Tanganga hasn't played for Spurs since a three-minute cameo against Manchester United in April 2023 and had been shipped off on loan to Bundesliga side Augsburg last summer. The defender was recalled by his parent club in January having not played once for the side in what The Independent branded a 'disastrous' move for the 24-year-old.

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The Spurs man was then loaned to Millwall and turned heads across the Championship in his sixth appearance for a showing praised as 'brave' by his new manager. Tanganga grabbed the opening goal after just five minutes at St. Mary's to kickstart what would be a vital 2-1 win for the Lions and their first three points since New Year's Day.

It wasn't just the goal that won plaudits either with Tanganga's overall performance earning him the highest WhoScored rating for the Gameweek across the week and a place in the Sky Bet Championship Team of the Week. Millwall supporters online labelled Tanganga a 'top quality player at this level', 'unbelievable' and 'immense'.

One Spurs fan added: "It’s really good to see Japhet Tanganga looking so good in his Millwall loan. Sure it’s the Championship, but have always felt he would excel with regular games and the resulting confidence."

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Speaking after the match, Harris reflected on his first fixture working with the squad. He said: "It will be different for them. I am a different character to the managers they’ve had recently. I do wear my heart on my sleeve – manage with spirit, laughter, character and personality. They are certainly going to enjoy themselves.

Tanganga has made 50 appearances for Spurs but not featured in nearly a year.Tanganga has made 50 appearances for Spurs but not featured in nearly a year.
Tanganga has made 50 appearances for Spurs but not featured in nearly a year.

“I’ve been invited back to the football club to try and help – to support not just the football club but the group of players. We’ve got some good players, we’ve clearly got some good players and good lads. But, sometimes, that’s not just enough for Millwall – you need a Millwall way about you, a bit of guidance in that. I think I’m in quite a good position to offer that guidance and support.

“Today we saw that. What they have seen from me so far is not just about tactically trying to get it right – it’s about your character as well, your desire to want to win."

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