Vertonghen: I snubbed Arsenal

Juventus striker Nicklas Bendtner could be sidelined for up to

three months after damaging his leg against Cagliari on Wednesday


The on-loan Arsenal forward was forced to leave the pitch before

half-time in a 1-0 Coppa Italia victory and medical tests revealed

the extent of the injury.

A statement on read: “Nicklas Bendtner has

undergone an MRI scan and ultrasound that have revealed a lesion on

his left adductor tendon.

“The prognosis will become clearer after further examinations

which the Danish striker will undergo in the coming days.”

Bendtner has struggled to make an impact for the Italian

champions – failing to score in eight appearances – but his

protracted absence will leave the Serie A leaders light on numbers

up front, with only Fabio Quagliarella, Mirko Vucinic and Sebastian

Giovinco available.

There was better news on midfielder Arturo Vidal, who complained

of pain in his right knee during the game, with an MRI scan

revealing light bruising.

Vertonghen joined Spurs from Ajax this summer and has gone on to

become a fans’ favourite after a series of excellent displays for

Andre Villas-Boas’ team.

The Belgian started his White Hart Lane career as a centre-back

but soon moved over to left-back – the position he plays in for his

country – after an injury to Benoit Assou-Ekotto.

Gunners manager Wenger, who is under pressure after Arsenal’s

poor start to the campaign, was interested in signing Vertonghen,

but the 25-year-old instead opted to move to the Gunners’ north

London rivals after it became clear that the Frenchman wanted him

to play in midfield.

“(Arsenal’s interest) was concrete, but they wanted me to be a

controller in the midfield, an Emmanuel Petit-type,” Vertonghen

told Dutch website NUsport.

“I’m not afraid of competition, but the overall picture of Spurs

appealed to me more.”

Spurs manager Villas-Boas initially moved Gareth Bale to

left-back following Assou-Ekotto’s injury, but Vertonghen has been

a more effective solution during the Cameroonian’s absence.

With Assou-Ekotto now back in full training following his

three-month layoff, Vertonghen looks set to return to the heart of

the defence, much to his delight.

He added: “Ultimately, I just came to play at centre back.

“Gareth Bale had to play left back, but it did not work so he

pushed forward and I moved to full-back.

“I see myself still as a centre-back. I’m not agile enough to

play against players like Nani and (Raheem) Sterling.”

Villas-Boas, meanwhile, says any new recruits he adds in January

must subscribe to his and Tottenham’s attacking philosophy.

Speaking in a question and answer session on Twitter, the

Portuguese, who has been linked with moves for Joao Moutinho,

Fernando Llorente and Willian, said: “The players we are trying to

bring in and have here also embrace that philosophy which we want

to carry into the future.

“(Being at Spurs) is great because of the philosophy of the club

want to implement, what I think about football and the way we

should play.

“I think we should have a go, play well and be open.”

Despite last weekend’s defeat at Everton, Villas-Boas’ team go

in to Sunday’s game against Swansea in fifth place, just three

points behind Chelsea.

The 35-year-old, who lasted just under nine months in charge at

Stamford Bridge, has been pleased by his start to life at White

Hart Lane.

He said: “I have encountered a tremendous group of people, staff

& players. (It was) important to get (a) positive response,

which we have had since we arrived.

“It has been an exciting five months and we hope we can keep

doing well in order to repay the confidence given to us from the


Wycombe, meanwhile, have announced that Spurs goalkeeper Jordan

Archer has extended his loan spell with the npower League Two side

until the end of the season.