Spurs quick to sign up star of this season’s Champions League
TOTTENHAM have secured the future of another of their Champions League heroes after William Gallas signed a two-year contract extension yesterday.
Having given Gareth Bale a new four-and-a-half deal less than two weeks ago, Spurs have also moved to extend Gallas’ stay at White Hart Lane, following a string of fine performances in Europe.
The ex-Arsenal captain, who moved across north London on a free transfer in the summer, initially signed a one-year deal and was expected to provide competition and cover for the likes of Ledley King, Michael Dawson, Younes Kaboul and Sebastien Bassong.
However, the French international has become a key figure in Tottenham’s campaign, making 28 appearances – 27 of them as starts.
Gallas’ original deal stated that he would earn an extension if he started ‘more than 30 games’, but Harry Redknapp and Spurs chairman Daniel Levy have decided that the experienced centre-back has already proved his worth, and have tied him to Spurs until 2013.
Redknapp first hinted that an offer was on the way when he admitted that Gallas had become his first-choice centre-back in January.
However, the defender was seemingly loath to commit his future following the victory over AC Milan, as he stressed the importance that he places on playing Champions League football every year.
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At the same time the Frenchman, who has played in London since 2001 with Chelsea, Arsenal and Spurs, revealed the importance of staying in the capital, where his family is settled.
“When I left Arsenal, the most important thing was to stay in London for my family and to play in the Champions League,” he said. “Tottenham gave me that opportunity to play in the Champions League so I signed for them.
“Will I be here next season? Maybe, I don’t know yet. I don’t know what can happen, nobody can know about the future. I’m happy to be here, we’ll try to see if I can stay here for next season.
“Will it depend on whether Spurs are in the Champions League again? Yes, I think it will be very important to be in the Champions League next season, so I will do my best to do everything for them [Spurs] because I think they deserve it. The fans are great, the atmosphere is unbelievable and Tottenham are starting to be big.”
With Spurs currently sitting in fifth place, Gallas was expected to delay any decision over his future until the end of the season, when the race for the top four had been decided.
However, the option of staying in London has clearly been a big factor and the 33-year-old has jumped at the offer of a two-year deal, which also assures him a place at one of the Premier League’s top clubs until the age of 35.