Europa League: Villas-Boas not ready to toast Defoe milestone


TOTTENHAM manager Andre Villas-Boas says celebrating Jermain Defoe’s achievement of equalling the club’s all-time European goalscoring record will remain on hold until he seals their qualification for the Europa League knockout stages.

After defender Jan Vertonghen headed the opener, Defoe doubled Spurs’ lead with his 22nd European goal in lillywhite to seal a third straight win in the competition.

Spurs need just a point from their remaining three games in Group K to progress and Villas-Boas hopes it can be wrapped up against Sheriff in two weeks with Defoe breaking the record.

“Let’s not celebrate it before it happens, but it will be a great record for him and the club,” said Villas-Boas. “We did enough to win the game, which was the objective so we can achieve qualification in the next game.”

Spurs took the lead on 12 minutes when Christian Eriksen exchanged passes at a short corner with Erik Lamela, then crossed for Vertonghen to score at the far post.

Henrique Luvannor was denied an equaliser for the home side by a goal-line clearance from defender Vlad Chiriches at full stretch.

Winger Aaron Lennon hit the post on 67 minutes with a low drive from the edge of the box, before Defoe sealed the win on 75 minutes when he thundered in a deflected first-time effort from 25 yards.