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AVB: Friedel has Spurs future
Published : 06 Dec 2012 07:33:00Rss feed
Andre Villas-Boas insists he has no plans to sell Brad Friedel as he prepares to recall him for the Europa League deceider with Panathinaikos.
Hugo Lloris has started Tottenham's last five games after ousting Friedel from the first team, but the 41-year-old will have a chance to win back his spot on a permanent basis on Thursday night when he lines up against the Greek side. Friedel's future at White Hart Lane has been in doubt since Tottenham rebuffed an enquiry from his former club Blackburn last month. And should the Lancashire club bid for the player again in January, Villas-Boas says he will adopt the same stance.
"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," the Tottenham manager said. "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."
"It's difficult for me (to accept)," Villas-Boas said.
"We lost the Cup Winners' Cup and you miss it.
"Most clubs are in a difficult financial situation. Increasing the Champions League means you have to remove the name 'Champions' out of it as it would not make any sense.
"I think it would be an unpopular decision, certainly for me it would be a disappointment."
Michael Dawson and Gareth Bale will miss Thursday's clash as they suffered hamstring injuries against Fulham but there was better news from the treatment room on Wednesday concerning long-term absentees Scott Parker and Benoit Assou-Ekotto, who are expected to be fit for next weekend's game against Swansea.
"They have both been out for some time but we have to be sensible with the situation," the former Chelsea boss added. "Parker is an amazing player and it is a big boost for us."