AVB: Bale could be Golden wonder

Andre Villas-Boas says Gareth Bale can win the Golden Boot this season - but knows "it will be difficult".

Last Updated: 02/03/13 at 13:44 Post Comment

Gareth Bale: Rich vein of goalscoring form

Gareth Bale: Rich vein of goalscoring form

With 11 matches of the season left, Bale has already racked up an impressive 15 goals in the Barclays Premier League - five more than his previous best in an entire season.

That tally leaves Bale four short of current top scorer Robin van Persie, and three adrift of Liverpool's Luis Suarez, but if the trio keep on scoring at their current rates then it will be the Welshman who ends up finishing the season as top scorer.

Over the last seven games Bale has averaged 1.28 goals per match, significantly more than Van Persie (0.28), Suarez (0.71) and Swansea hitman Michu (0.42).

Should Bale maintain this ratio he will end the season with 29 goals, with Suarez three behind on 26 and Van Persie even further adrift on 22.

"It is possible (that Bale can win the Golden Boot), yes," Villas-Boas said.

"That would be excellent. I am not sure (if he will). It is difficult. There are a lot of players competing. Van Persie, Suarez, and Jermain Defoe is still in the mix, but it is possible."

Few would have predicted that Bale would become one of the hottest properties in world football when he made his debut for Spurs in 2007 as a gangly left-back.

The second goal the Welshman scored for the north London club following his arrival from Southampton six years ago was against bitter rivals Arsenal - the team they face tomorrow at White Hart Lane.

Back then Arsenal were always big favourites to beat Spurs in the derby, but it has been a much more even affair of late, with both teams winning three games, and three being drawn, over the last five years.

Villas-Boas played down the suggestion that Spurs are now the masters of north London, but he knows the seven-point gap they will open up over Arsenal if they win will prove crucial in the race for Champions League qualification.

"We are focused on trying to win because it's important to establish our position in the Premier League," the Tottenham manager said.

"Our objective is to gain the most amount of points as we can and against Arsenal, we have the chance to move further away from them and put ourselves in a more comfortable position.

"It's an opportunity. The players are ready, prepared and we all know what we want to achieve this season.

"This is a very specific game, anything could happen really.

"I think it will be an open game from both sides, full of emotion, full of adrenaline, unpredictable. I think that's the sort of game we expect and most of the fixtures have translated like that."

The fixture has produced some cracking games in recent times. The 4-4 draw in 2008, Spurs' second half-comeback in the 3-2 win at the Emirates in 2010, and last year's 2-1 win at White Hart Lane will be the most memorable among those devoted to the blue and white half of north London.

Arsenal fans, on the other hand, will have no trouble recalling the two 5-2 thrashings at the Emirates Stadium over the last 12 months.

Emmanuel Adebayor scored the opener in the last derby, but was then sent off after 18 minutes and Arsenal showed no mercy by putting five past their opponents.

Tottenham right-back Kyle Walker wants to avenge that defeat tomorrow.

"If we had 11 men it would have been a totally different game," Walker told Spurs TV Online.

"We might have gone on and won, but we have to put it right on Sunday."

Walker wrote himself in to White Hart Lane folklore by hitting a thunderbolt of a winner in the corresponding fixture last year - which Tottenham won 2-1.

"It's a big London derby, we've got to do it for the fans and hopefully I will score a screamer again," he said.


Get £330 from your free £10 bet with Sky Bet if Arsenal win 3-0


Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

H

ow are people still backing Arsenal for the title? It's like you're predicting the tide not to come in; Arsenal will finish third or fourth and make the quarter final of the Champions League. It was ever thus.

thefuldutch
F365's Season Predictions

N

othing screams 'Panic!!' when your new manager brings Fellaini on as a sub for your star signing of the summer and within 5 minutes you concede the winner. I know it is only the first game in but I would seriously be sh1**ng myself I was a Man Utd supporter. This has the potential of being very nasty indeed.

stevemelbourne
Now Are You Nervous, Louis?

I

n the words of Pete Townsend, meet the new boss, the same as the old boss. Though I would comment that it's 3 more points than we picked up in the same fixture last year, so that's a 100% improvement.

uncle monty
No Sign That Liverpool Will Lessen Attacking Intent

Footer 365

Chelsea goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois wants rival Petr Cech to stay

Thibaut Courtois wants Petr Cech, his rival for the Chelsea goalkeeper's jersey, to stay at the club.

Champions League: Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger slams decision to send off Aaron Ramsey

Arsene Wenger described Aaron Ramsey's dismissal as "unacceptable" after Arsenal picked up a 0-0 draw at Besiktas.

Sky Bet Championship: Nottingham Forest go top, level with Cardiff, Charlton and Millwall

Nottingham Forest came from behind to replace Bournemouth at the top, level with Cardiff, Charlton and Millwall.

Mail Box

Dear Brendan, Please Sign Di Maria

That's the request to Brendan Rodgers in the mailbox, and not just because it would annoy Man United fans. Plus, more thoughts on why Arsenal didn't want Cescy back...

Man United Fans Still Pining For Mourinho

The morning mailbox ponders where United might be now had the club appointed Jose Mourinho last season, while Chelsea fans are getting very excited...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property