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Andre Villas-Boas gave Tottenham Hotspur target Nathan Ake an excellent opportunity at 16-years-old

Tottenham Hotspur

Andre Villas-Boas gave Tottenham Hotspur target Nathan Ake an excellent opportunity at 16-years-old

The Dutch star was handed first-team training duties at Chelsea when AVB was in charge.

Tottenham Hotspur are being linked with a move for Bournemouth defender Nathan Ake this week. As reported by the Daily Star, Spurs and Manchester United are both said to be targeting the Dutchman, who is valued at £40 million by the Cherries.

Tottenham are starting to look for a new centre-back. Jan Vertonghen and Toby Alderweireld are both nearing the end of their respective contracts at the club and Mauricio Pochettino is looking to build a new defensive partnership with Davinson Sanchez. Left-footed Ake would be the perfect option to play alongside the Colombian starlet.

Interestingly, the Dutch defender has a link with a former Tottenham manager.

 

Ake was brought to Chelsea in January 2011 from Feyenoord. The summer after that saw Andre Villas-Boas employed as the new Chelsea boss.

BOURNEMOUTH, ENGLAND – MARCH 11: Nathan Ake of Bournemouth gets between Son Heung-Min and Erik Lamela of Tottenham Hotspur during the Premier League match between AFC Bournemouth and Tottenham Hotspur at Vitality Stadium on March 11, 2018 in Bournemouth, England. (Photo by AFC Bournemouth/AFC Bournemouth via Getty Images)

One of the key factors he tried to implement at Stamford Bridge, was a changing of the guard. It meant bringing in some of the club’s excellent young talent into first-team training. That included a 16-year-old Ake.

Unfortunately, AVB never got the chance to fully work with the young Dutchman after getting the shove at Chelsea. It was actually Rafa Benitez who eventually gave him his Chelsea debut in December 2012.

Chelsea’s Nathan Ake, Frank Lampard during a training session at the Cobham Training Ground on 29th January 2013 in Cobham, England (Photo by Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC via Getty Images)

But AVB saw enough of him to promote him to the first-team training sessions when still, essentially, a schoolboy. He trained with the likes of John Terry, Frank Lampard and Ashley Cole, which must have been a sensational learning experience for the young Dutch star.

Now he is looking like being a Tottenham target at a handsome £40 million price-tag. It is quite the progression from the youngster in just under eight years and Spurs will hope to win this transfer battle.

Sports journalist based in Bristol. Everton fan for my sins.

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