20 December 2019 14:48
football Updated: Dec 20, 2019 17:15 IST Belgian international Toby Alderweireld signed a new contract with Premier League side Tottenham Hotspur which will keep him at the club until 2023. The 30-year-old central defender, capped 98 times and a pivotal figure in Belgium's run to the 2018 World Cup semi-finals, has been at Spurs since signing from Atletico Madrid in 2015. "We are delighted to announce that Toby Alderweireld has signed a new contract with the Club until 2023," read a statement form the club. "A mainstay of our back line, Toby played in 50 of our 58 matches last season, starting 12 of 13 in our run to the Champions League final. So far this term, he's started 16 of our 17 games in the Premier League." Alderweireld agreeing to a new contract is a boost for Spurs manager Jose Mourinho, who was keen to sign him last year when he was in charge of Manchester United.
"I'm very, very happy," Alderweireld told Spurs TV. "I'm honoured to play for this club and I'm a small piece of getting to the next level in a couple of seasons. "I think this is just the beginning of something big and something very exciting "There is no place I can be happier. "I couldn't see myself playing for another team. "It's like I'm living some sort of dream." Alderweireld looked set to be leaving Spurs at the end of the current campaign as negotiations over a new deal had stalled and under Mourinho's predecessor Mauricio Pochettino there appeared to be little chance of them restarting.
The club exercised an extension in his contract last term which also triggered a £25 million ($33 million) release clause, but only Serie A side AS Roma were interested in the centre-back and made a much smaller bid in the summer. Alderweireld, who has a young child and a second on the way, has now decided to stay in London and has committed his long-term future to the club. His agreeing a new deal may spur on his compatriot and fellow defender Jan Vertonghen to also agree a new contract. The 32-year-old, who will be out of contract in the close season, is free to talk terms with European clubs in the new year. Toby Alderweireld says he cannot imagine himself playing for another club after signing a new contract with Tottenham. Ending two years of uncertainty around his future, Alderweireld put recommitted to the club just days before being able to speak to foreign rivals over a Bosman summer exit. Standard Sport understands the new contract, which runs until 2023, has tripled Alderweireld's wage to around £150,000 a week. Speaking to the club following confirmation, Alderweireld says a variety of factors helped him come to his decision but his love for the club was key. "I'm very, very happy, no words can describe," he told the official website. "Another couple of years at Spurs, there's no place I'd be happier. Destination Tottenham: The story of Tottenham Hostspur Stadium 6 show all Destination Tottenham: The story of Tottenham Hostspur Stadium 1/6 2/6 3/6 4/6 Miles Willis Photography 5/6 6/6 1/6 2/6 3/6 4/6 Miles Willis Photography 5/6 6/6 "I'm honoured to play for this club. I'm a small piece of getting to the next level in a couple of seasons, reaching the Champions League season in and season out and then reaching the final. "This is just the beginning of something big and something very exciting. "If you're happy and enjoying yourself, time flies. My family is happy here and I'm very lucky to have a very good connection with the fans. "I'm a Spurs player and I couldn't see myself playing for another team. I'm in love with the club and it feels both ways, I love the fans and the stadium. I'm living some sort of dream."