Former Belgian international, Yves Vanderhaeghe has admitted that he turned down an opportunity to join Tottenham Hotspur at the turn of the millennium as the club did not have the same status that it does now.
Since he retired from professional football, Vanderhaeghe has forged a decent career as a coach, with the 50-year-old now being in charge of Belgian top-flight side, Kortrijk.
Vanderhaeghe, who was a centre midfielder during his playing days, spent the entirety of his playing career in Belgium.
He was capped 48 times for his country and the peak of his club career arguably came during his time at Anderlecht, for whom he made 140 appearances (Wikipedia).
Vanderhaeghe has now revealed that he had an offer to come to North London before Anderlecht swooped for him in 2000 but insisted that he had his heart set on signing for the Belgian giants.
In an interview to Voetbalkrant (as translated by Sport Witness), the Kortrijk boss said: “I signed with Anderlecht by the start of Euro 2000. There were still a few clubs interested, including Tottenham.
“But in that period Tottenham didn’t have the name and status they have today. Even though they were already a big club then. But my priority was Anderlecht
“Although the fact that England is a dream for many footballers. The stadiums, the public, but also the mentality.
“In England, a footballer earns a lot of money, he’s treated like a star. In Belgium, footballers are seen more as spoiled children.”
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