BBC pundit Garth Crooks has heaped praise on Kalidou Koulibaly following Chelsea’s 2-2 draw with Tottenham.

The Senegal international scored the opener as the Blues set out to dominate their London rivals.

However, a late Harry Kane goal rescued a point in a game surrounded by controversy and ill-temper.

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Despite actually conceding twice, it took nothing away from Koulibaly’s performance, with him showing fans exactly what he can do both defensively and on the ball.

Crooks has claimed that the centre-back has also shown that he has the ability to be a seamless replacement for Antonio Rudiger.

Crooks praises Koulibaly

He said: “Chelsea needed someone a little bit special to replace Antonio Rudiger and I think they may have found him. Koulibaly was outstanding for Napoli under Carlo Ancelotti and developed an excellent reputation for his competitive nature while in Italy – he needed all of that against Spurs.

“There can’t be many defenders in the world who can score a goal like he did. This was a good home debut for Koulibaly, even though his side did concede two goals. Chelsea played well and Tottenham’s best player was manager Antonio Conte, who is not to be messed with.”

Despite not picking up three points, Thomas Tuchel will be more than encouraged by the team’s performance on Sunday, with Koulibaly’s display notably good.

Photo by Chris Brunskill/Fantasista/Getty Images

Alongside impressive home debuts from fellow signings Raheem Sterling and Marc Cucurella, fans will believe the former Napoli man could end up being a sensational signing.

His passing with both feet was reminiscent of Rudiger before him, and his importance to the side last season absolutely needed competent replacing.

Chelsea fans will now just hope his impressive start to the campaign continues next week against Leeds, as they look to maintain their unbeaten start to the Premier League season.

Jack is a football journalist who graduated from the University of Derby. He has freelanced for The Athletic and The Sun. Jack has reported live from Premier League and Championship grounds, whilst also being published in the Non League Paper.