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Europa exit fails to quell AVB spirit

Andre Villas-Boas believes Tottenham’s Europa League performances this term have altered the perception of the competition within England.

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Spurs exited the UEFA tournament at the quarter-final stage following a penalty shootout defeat to Basel on Thursday.

While Villas-Boas was saddened to see his side eliminated, he believes the respect Tottenham have shown the second-tier European competition will change the way Premier League sides’ approach the Europa League in the future.

“I’m disappointed not to go through as we had high ambitions for the competition,” Villas-Boas told ITV after the match. “My first thoughts are for the players, who have set the country a great example.

“The way they approached the Europa League, playing every Thursday and Sunday, and their commitment showed the country it was possible to do it in a different way. We made the country feel different towards the competition.

“Unfortunately Newcastle are out too but we’ve seen most of the English teams change their approach towards a competition that has now started to mean a lot.

“We’re happy although this is a great disappointment, because we’ve set a standard for the future. I think next time we’ll go a little bit better.”

Fri 12 April, 2013
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