Jonathan Woodgate backs Tottenham title push


Former Tottenham defender Jonathan Woodgate expects his old club to mount a serious title challenge but is not dwelling on what might have been.

Woodgate was released by the Londoners in the summer after three and a half injury-plagued years at White Hart Lane.

The club opted not to retain the 31-year-old because of the cost of insuring him and he was later offered the chance to resurrect his career with Stoke.

Woodgate was disappointed at the club's decision but does not hold a grudge and hopes they go on to success.

"There's no animosity between me and anyone at Spurs," said Woodgate, who shone against his old team-mates as Stoke clung on for a controversial 2-1 Barclays Premier League win over Harry Redknapp's in-form team at the Britannia Stadium yesterday.

"They're a great side and I wish them all the luck in the world.

"I think they'll go close to winning the league, if not this year, then next year.

"I don't want to show anyone anything - I'll do it with my performances.

"I don't need to show anyone I can still play. I get on with my game and I know Harry Redknapp believes in me, so no problem.

"I didn't want to leave and he didn't want me to either. But that's life - you've got to get on with it. You move on."

Woodgate, normally a centre-half, was asked by Stoke boss Tony Pulis to fill in at right-back against Spurs.

That brought him up against flying winger Gareth Bale but Woodgate survived the test as Stoke claimed victory to end Tottenham's six-match winning streak.

Woodgate said: "I didn't sleep much the other night, to be honest.

"He's the best winger in the world, more or less."

Spurs started sluggishly and fell behind to two strikes from another of their ex-players, Matthew Etherington, after twice failing to deal with Ryan Shotton throw-ins.

They replied with an Emmanuel Adebayor penalty before throwing everything into attack and they were unlucky not to claim at least a point.

Among a catalogue of near misses, Spurs also had two more penalty appeals for handball declined while Adebayor had another legitimate-looking goal disallowed.

To compound their misery, Younes Kaboul was sent off and Redknapp rounded on referee Chris Foy afterwards.

Yet despite Spurs' immense misfortune, Woodgate feels that they will have to consider it a chance missed.

"Maybe to come here and get a result, maybe grind out a 2-2, even when they go down to 10 men," said Woodgate, when asked what Spurs' missing ingredient could be.

"But I think Spurs are an unbelievable team - different class - and they'll go very close to winning the title.

"The whole team has pace and it's frightening for an opposing team when you know everyone's quick, and with the ability they've got, as well as speed, they're going to be a good side."


Barn owls are among species that could be affected
charity appeal
Sarah Silverman (middle) with sister Reform Rabbi Susan Silverman (right) and sister actress Laura Silverman (left) at Jerusalem's Western Wall for feminist Hanuka candle-lighting ceremony
peopleControversial comedian stages pro-equality Hanukkah lighting during a protest at Jerusalem's Wailing Wall
Arts and Entertainment
The Bach Choir has been crowned the inaugural winner of Sky Arts’ show The Great Culture Quiz
arts + ents140-year-old choir declared winner of Sky Arts' 'The Great Culture Quiz'
After another poor series in Sri Lanka, Alastair Cook claimed all players go through a lean period
cricketEoin Morgan reportedly to take over ODI captaincy
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas