Lenglet's father reveals one trick that helped his son turn into defensive beast
- Lenglet has replaced Umtiti at both club and national team.
- Clement is not a fast player and had to learn how to anticipate the forward's next move.
- The defender's role models are Maldini and Blanc.
- He also used to watch videos of Ronaldinho and Zidane.
Clement Lenglet is slowly but steadily turning into one of the best defenders in world football. When Barca signed him from Sevilla, many expected the 24-year-old to have a back-up role. However, Samuel Umtiti's long term injury allowed Clement to fully reveal his potential.
In a recent interview with L'Equipe, the player's father gave away the secret of the defender's success:
"As a child, Clement watched videos of Zidane and Ronaldinho. From the age of 14, everything changed and he had two new referents: Paolo Maldini and Laurent Blanc. He spent hours watching videos of them."
Allegedly, Clement's coach from the youth team Philippe Lambert was the one to suggest this:
"I remember that it worked because he told us: 'I'm not fast.'
"Then we suggested he follows the example of [Laurent] Blanc, who used to anticipate the rival's next move and the opponent's intention to go forward," the coach recalls.
Mundo Deportivo also add that Paolo Maldini's example has taught Lenglet how to play on the flank, as the Italian could operate both as a centre-back and a left-back.
Laurent Blanc has, in fact, played for Barca back in the 1996-97 season. However, the Frenchman left one year after having played 38 matches and scored 1 goal.
Watch also: Lenglet picks his top 4 legends