Eriksen can become one of Tottenham’s best ever players, says Vertonghen
12:00 18 December 2014
PA Wire/Press Association Images
Jan Vertonghen believes Christian Eriksen could become one of Tottenham’s best ever players after helping to persuade the Dane to join him at Spurs.
The pair played together at Ajax and have gone on to become team-mates at White Hart Lane, with Vertonghen moving to north London in the summer of 2012 and Eriksen following him in 2013.
Eriksen enjoyed a fine first season in England and, although he initially struggled in the early stages of this campaign under Mauricio Pochettino, he has recently rediscovered his top form.
The 22-year-old has scored three goals in the last six games – including Sunday’s late winner at Swansea – and he played a key role in three of Spurs’ four goals in their 4-0 home win over Newcastle in the Capital One Cup quarter-final last night.
Vertonghen admits he had a hand in Eriksen’s move to Tottenham, and he believes the midfielder could go on to rank amongst the likes of Glenn Hoddle, Paul Gascoigne, Luka Modric, Rafael van der Vaart and Spurs’ other legendary creative players.
“I know Luka and Rafael because they’re playing in my era, but I know the reputation of Hoddle and Gascoigne,” said Vertonghen. “Christian can reach their level, 100 per cent. He can become one of the better players Spurs have ever had.
“As a playmaker I think he can be one of the best in the Premier League. I’ve played with him since he was 16 or 17 so probably for six or seven years now, and he’s improving every season.
“In the end of his Ajax days I think they were a bit critical because his stats weren’t as good as they should be, they said, but I think he’s showing now that he can score and get assists as well.
“We need him on the ball as much as possible. When he’s playing from the left he’s coming inside, and as a No10 he has even more influence. When he’s on the ball something always happens and it’s good for the team.
“He’s a very hard worker too. He’s first in [for training] and he’s on the pitch until the last minute. I’m a big fan of his and I’m happy I convinced him to come here.
“We had good contact when he was still at Ajax, and we always kept in touch. They [Tottenham] obviously asked me what I thought of him and I was very positive, and I think I did my job to convince him to come here.”
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