Bale makes the difference says Villas-Boas

Ahead of Wednesday’s crunch Champions League showdown with his former club Chelsea, Tottenham manager Andre Villas-Boas believes his star player Gareth Bale can make the difference.

A run of just three Premier League wins in seven games since victory in the north London derby in March has seen the club slip into fifth place below both Chelsea and Arsenal.

However, Bale’s sensational performances have continued, producing several Goal of the Season contenders, and recently sweeping up the PFA awards and the Football Writers’ Award.

Ahead of his first trip back to Stamford Bridge since his reign ended abruptly with the Blues in March 2012, Villas-Boas said: “(Gareth) has enjoyed his performances and that is vital for any football player.

“Managers have to guard against limiting them through too much organisation, but that hasn’t been the case with Gareth who has played in a different position to the one he has played in before.”

A late winner against a stubborn Southampton outfit at the weekend saw the winger break the 20-goal mark in the Premier League this season, becoming the first Spurs player to achieve this feat since Jurgen Klinsmann in 1995.

The 23-year-old has proved to be greatly effective playing in a more central role this season, rather than his usual wing position, which was still providing great amounts of danger, but nowhere near the goals ratio that he has achieved this season.

When asked about the future natural position for Bale, Villas-Boas added: “It was born out of an experiment in Baltimore, America when we played Liverpool in a pre-season game.

“I’m not sure that the shift is definitive but it does give us the option of using him in different positions. At the moment, though, the goals he is getting are giving him the buzz to play there.”

After Chelsea, Tottenham play Stoke and Sunderland in their final two games.

For more insight from Andre Villas Boas and other leading managers plus exclusive Premier League highlights go to www.yahoo.co.uk/sport

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