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Bale should stay at Tottenham, says Riise

Fulham defender John Arne Riise believes Tottenham star Gareth Bale should not succumb to the temptation of Europe’s biggest sides.

Riise left home in Norway at 17 to fulfil his career ambition, but does not see any reason for Bale to leave Tottenham or the English Premier League.

Riise, who will face Bale’s side on Sunday at White Hart Lane, told The Sun why the Wales star should resist leaving Spurs.

Riise said: “When Real Madrid and Barcelona call your name it is tempting. But, for me, there seems no reason to leave Tottenham.

“The club seems to be going places, he is playing unbelievable football and he has his friends and family here.

“Moving abroad is a lonely business.

“When I was 17 I left Norway but I had to. The football there is not a high level.

“Going to Monaco was a once in a lifetime opportunity for me.

“But in my contract it was written that the club would pay for four members of my family to stay with me for two weeks out of every four,” said Riise, who subsequently signed for Liverpool in 2001 and then Roma in 2008.

“When I moved to Rome I was more mature. But they didn’t speak a word of English there.

“Only one player in the team did. The manager came up to me and just said ‘you play left’ — that was it. On the team bus I couldn’t speak to the other players.

“It was the same in the dressing room and all I would do is focus, focus, focus.

“Fans would come up and babble away and all I could do was nod my head and sign my autograph.

“Luckily I am mentally strong and got through it but it was difficult. Simple things become quite difficult with a big language barrier.”

Fulham’s trip across London to White Hart Lane on Sunday will see manager Martin Jol visit his former club.

Sat 16 March, 2013
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