Stopper staying put

Tottenham Hotspur

Tottenham boss Andre Villas-Boas insists that Brad Friedel has a future at the club and he will start tonight in the Europa League.

The veteran goalkeeper has missed out on the last five Premier League games, wheh he has been replaced by summer signing Hugo Lloris.

The Portuguese manager admits that it was difficult to leave the 41 year-old out of the starting line-up but that his omission does not mean that he will be leaving White Hart Lane.

This evening Spurs take on Greek side Panathinaikos in their final Europa League group game – the north London club need only a draw to qualify for the knockout stages.

Blackburn Rovers launched a bid to bring the American back to Ewood Park last week – a club where he made 287 appearances – but the offer was turned down by the Premier League side.

“I don’t know anything about (Blackburn’s bid). We are trying to hold on to our best assets and Brad is certainly one of them,” said Villas-Boas.

“Brad has been excellent, I spoke to him and he has been such an important player for us. Rotation has not been because of performances. Both goalkeepers’ performances have been excellent. It gives me the ability at any time to throw a different keeper into the game. Hugo will not be involved in (the Panathinaikos) game.”


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