AVB gives his verdict on Chiriches and Lamela after Anzhi win
15:24 04 October 2013
Tottenham manager Andre Villas-Boas praised defender Vlad Chiriches after yesterday’s 2-0 Europa League win against Anzhi Makhachkala but admitted that conditions made it difficult for winger Erik Lamela.
Jermain Defoe and Nacer Chadli were on target for Spurs in Russia, but it was Romanian defender Chiriches who really caught the eye.
Signed from Steaua Bucharest in the summer, Spurs fans voted the 23-year-old man of the match on his first European start for the club.
“He is competing with three very good central defenders,” Villas-Boas said.
“He made the team straight after he was registered and went onto the bench against Chelsea and played at Anzhi.
“Out of three possible games he was involved in two, so he’s in competition with Michael Dawson, Jan and Younes - and performances like this make it easier for him [to compete].”
Club record signing Lamela, meanwhile was one of those that failed to impress on a near-freezing night in Ramenskoye.
The winger has yet to nail down a starting spot after his £30million summer arrival from Roma and last night struggled on the bobbly Saturn Stadium pitch, which deteriorated as the match progressed.
“They were difficult conditions,” Villas-Boas said. “The pitch was awful and it was difficult for technical players to make a difference.
“We still tried to play the ball but you saw many times we lost it.
“I am extremely happy with what Erik has been doing. It was difficult for him because he is a player that likes to be creative, involved in short combinations and he couldn’t come into the game as much as we wanted.
“But up until now I’m extremely happy with what he’s been doing. He just faces tough competition from Andros Townsend, who has also been doing very well, for that position.”