Next Game

AEL v Tottenham

Thursday, 21 August 2014, 17:00

Europa League Qual Play-Offs Round

Upton Park

Last Game

West Ham 0 - 1 Tottenham

Saturday, 16 August 2014, 15:00

Barclays Prem

Garde: I'm a big fan of Bale

Remi Garde wishes he had been alerted to Gareth Bale's talents earlier - so he could have tried to lure the Tottenham winger to Lyon.

Last Updated: 13/02/13 at 20:22 Post Comment

Remi Garde: Admits Bale is the man his players must stop

Remi Garde: Admits Bale is the man his players must stop

Bet £10 Get £30

Daily Offers And Promotions. Join Now & Bet £10 and Get a £30 Free Bet

Lyon travel to White Hart Lane on Thursday knowing they will have to stop Bale if they are to stand any chance of making the last 16 of the Europa League.

The 23-year-old has scored five goals in his last four matches to take his tally for the season to 19 - comfortably his best return since he made his bow in 2006.

Garde, Lyon's manager, needs no reminding of how deadly the Welshman can be. The 46-year-old was informed about Bale's talents by former Lyon youth director Georges Prost, who held the same post at Southampton from 2002-2007 when the winger was at the south coast club.

Back then Bale was just a gangly left-back, but Prost was still convinced the wide man was set for stardom.

"Georges Prost worked with Gareth as a youngster at Southampton," Garde said.

"He told me a few years ago about him, but he was about 16 at the time and he had already made his debut for Southampton. He was a young man but he was already expensive then, too expensive.

"Prost told me how quick he was then, how much skill he was blessed with even at that age, so it's not a surprise to me to see the top form Gareth has been in. "He is the sort of player that we do need to keep an eye on tomorrow."

This is the first time that Garde has returned to north London since his playing days with Spurs' bitter local rivals Arsenal.

Garde joined the club from Strasbourg on the same day as Patrick Vieira arrived from AC Milan in 1996, but both players' careers then took very different paths.

Vieira went on to become a Gunners icon, winning three Barclays Premier League titles, but Garde left three years later having made just 27 starts.

Although he only had limited playing time at Arsenal, Garde remembers his years at Highbury fondly and he admits the fact that this game is against the Gunners' biggest rivals adds an extra edge to the occasion.

"I can't deny that when I wore the red shirt of Arsenal the matches against Spurs were important moments for me," said Garde, whose team arrive in London on the back of two 3-1 defeats.

"It was important to beat Spurs and I suppose in truth those feelings are still there in my head now, even though that page in my career has turned now."

Spurs and Lyon are linked by goalkeeper Hugo Lloris, who joined Andre Villas-Boas in a £12million move last summer.

Lloris has been in superb form of late, but Villas-Boas revealed today that Brad Friedel will start in goal ahead of the France captain, much to Garde's disappointment.

"I suppose it's kind of a regret (that Lloris is not playing). It is for all of us," Garde said.

"He was very much loved at Lyon. He made a big impression.

"He was a great guy so it would have been nice to have the experience of coming up against him, rather than just seeing him in the corridor."

Bet £10 Get £30

Daily Offers And Promotions. Join Now & Bet £10 and Get a £30 Free Bet

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

O

K FIFA we're done, you can ban us now

jimmyjazz
Barcelona transfer ban upheld

A

h Daniel. I could spend hours on this subject putting the world to rights. You can even take a step back and ask why football fans (and society in general) have this need to know that something will happen before it actually does. There are times this important, when it comes to things like war, food production and natural disasters. A man you've never met changing his job? Not so much.

ajsr1982
Time To Burst The ITK Bubble

G

reat article. Hits the nail on the head. Encapsulates why I don't read tabloid newspapers anymore. The only thing worse is the 'told you so first' headline when they get lucky.

ianonabeach
Time To Burst The ITK Bubble

Footer 365

Transfer News: Bruce confirms Hull are eying Vincent Aboubakar

Hull City manager Steve Bruce has revealed the club are considering a move for Lorient forward Vincent Aboubakar.

Premier League: Edin Dzeko signs new four-year Manchester City deal

Edin Dzeko has signed a new four-year contract with Manchester City.

Champions League: Callum McGregor on target in Celtic draw

Celtic claimed a 1-1 draw with Maribor in Slovenia in the first leg of their Champions League play-off clash.

Mail Box

So Long And Good Luck To Nani

A Mailbox that offers best wishes to a departing hero, defends Olivier Giroud, tells us to steady on over Calum Chambers and makes some amusing predictions...

Mailbox: Feeling Sorry For Poor TC23

If there's one loser in all the machinations at Man United, it's poor TC23. We have mercifully few mails on United, but lots on Arsenal and in particular Olivier Giroud...

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