£26m star has ‘never been popular’ at Hotspur Way

Tottenham Hotspur right wing-back Emerson Royal is ‘not very popular’ among the club’s fans but is clearly performing better than his competitors in training at Hotspur Way, according to journalist Paul Brown.

This summer saw the club splash £20 million on Middlesbrough ace Djed Spence but it is Royal who continues to be favoured by Antonio Conte.

What is the latest on Royal?

The 23-year-old – who sealed a £26 million move to north London in 2021 – had started all-but-one Premier League game this season heading into the north London derby with Arsenal two weeks ago, notching one assist in the process.

But a rash challenge on Gabriel Martinelli at the Emirates Stadium saw him collect a straight red card, earning him a three-match ban in the process.

It meant he was made to watch on from the sidelines as Spurs bounced back to winning ways against Brighton and will continue to spectate during clashes with Everton and Manchester United.

Ironically, the red card came just days after The Sun reported that the six-cap Brazil international had spent £800,000 in a bid to improve his performances.

This was apparently done by buying a hyperbaric oxygen chamber and commissioning a scouting report on Paris Saint-Germain wing-back Achraf Hakimi.

What has Brown said on Royal?

While Brown acknowledges that the wing-back is not the most popular player among supporters, he adds that he is clearly doing something right in north London.

The journalist told GIVEMESPORT: “He’s not very popular with the fanbase is he and I don’t think he ever has been. He still seems to be the first choice there when everyone is available for Conte so he’s obviously showing the manager stuff in training that the other contenders are not at the moment.”

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Who is Royal’s biggest competition?

It was Matt Doherty who started for Tottenham in place of Royal during Saturday’s clash with Brighton on the south coast.

The 29-cap Republic of Ireland international hit an impressive patch of form at the end of last season, where he directly contributed to five goals in six matches.

Spence is Conte’s other option on the right wing but, with the Italian hinting that he had no input in the decision to sign the youngster this summer, he does not appear to be a genuine contender as things stand.

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