Belgian international reveals he turned down the chance to make Emirates switch.
Tottenham Hotspur defender Jan Vertonghen has revealed that Arsenal were serious contenders to sign him from Ajax over the summer, but their plans for him did not chime with his own view on where he should play.
Arsene Wenger’s Gunners were strongly linked with the Belgian before he left Ajax, although ultimately Vertonghen chose to join Arsenal’s local rivals, Tottenham Hotspur – a move which he certainly does not regret having made.
And Belgian admits he could have joined Arsenal, such was the seriousness of their desire to sign him.
“Arsenal’s interest was concrete, but they wanted me to control the midfield, to be an Emmanuel Petit-type player”, Vertonghen told NUsport.
SOURCE: Inside Futbol
Tottenham defender Jan Vertonghen has revealed that he rejected the chance to join Spurs’ North London rivals Arsenal in the summer.
The Belgian, who has been a big hit for Spurs so far this season, despite being played out of position at left-back, revealed that the Gunners wanted him to play holding midfield – rather than in his natural position at centre-half.
It’s a surprising claim, given that Vertonghen was the Eredivisie Player of the Season last year, playing at centre-half for Ajax and, although the 25-year-old enjoys roaming forward, the left-footer hardly looks a natural midfield player.
That said, Arsenal lost Alex Song to Barcelona during the summer and have struggled for defensive midfield cover in the absence of the injured Abou Diaby. Perhaps Vertonghen would now be playing in-front of the back four, rather than in it, had he joined the Gunners.
Spurs, meanwhile, have two capable enforcers in Scott Parker and Sandro. And, with Benoit Assou-Ekotto set to return to the squad for Sunday’s clash with Swansea, the White Hart Lane faithful should finally get a chance to see Vertoghen given at extended run in his preferred position at centre-half.
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