Tottenham defender Jan Vertonghen suggested in-form winger Andros Townsend has the potential to become ‘the new Gareth Bale’.
Townsend has been the talk of English football this season after his sparkling displays in the national team’s final World Cup qualifiers backed up by consistent form in Spurs colours.
And Vertonghen is doing little to dampen that hype surrounding the 22-year-old.
“I think Andros can be our new Gareth Bale,” Vertonghen told reporters. “He has so much pace, technique and skill, and he can destroy you with both feet. I just hope he can keep going like this and he can be our best-ever player.
“I really think that, maybe one day, he could reach that level if he keeps working, which I’m sure he will. He’s still young, and in another two or three years I think he can reach that level.
“He’s 100% professional and I like him as a person as well so I’m very happy he’s doing this well.”
Vertonghen suggested Townsend’s form does not surprise him, admitting he never relished lining up against him in training even when he was not a regular in the Spurs first team.
“I remember playing against him in training last year. Sometimes I played left-back so I played against him when he was on the right wing in training, and I never liked playing against him,” he added.
“I was asking: Why is this guy not playing every week, with this talent? But of course, he had Aaron Lennon ahead of him and had to wait for his chance.”
Townsend appears to be keeping his feet on the ground after admitting he may be just ‘one or two bad games away from being dropped’, with the likes of Lennon and Erik Lamela waiting in the wings at Tottenham to take his place if his form dips.