• Premier League

AVB: Sissoko and Holtby were bargain signings

ESPN staff
February 9, 2013
Moussa Sissoko has made an instant impact on Tyneside © Getty Images

Tottenham coach Andre Villas-Boas has hailed Newcastle's signing of Moussa Sissoko as a 'massive coup' ahead of Saturday's clash at White Hart Lane.

Sissoko grabbed the headlines last week as his two goals stole victory from Chelsea, sparking wild celebrations in the Newcastle dugout and moving the Tyneside club up to 15th spot on the ladder.

However, Sissoko wasn't the only new Newcastle star to make an impact against the reigning European champions, as manager Alan Pardrew's French revolution has garnered instant success.

But despite the possibility of lightning striking twice in successive weeks, Villas-Boas could only cast a jealous eye at Pardrew's contingent of January transfer signings - especially the Toon's new hero Sissoko.

"Most of (Newcastle's) signings have gone straight in and have had the right impact," Villas-Boas said. "Sissoko was a great grab. A couple of years ago he was being linked with the top clubs in the world and to get him at such a low price was a massive coup for them."

Despite lacking Newcastle's frequency, Tottenham were no strangers to the January window, Villas-Boas bringing Germany under-21 captain Lewis Holtby to White Hart Lane from Schalke for £1.25 million.

And Villas-Boas couldn't hide his delight at securing a 22-year-old who has already made a quick impression in his burgeoning Tottenham career.

"He's made an immediate impact in the team in both games," Villas-Boas said of Holtby. "Lewis offers further options playing from the channels coming in.

"We haven't seen him in this position yet, but he finds comfort in that position because he played it before for Mainz.

"At the moment he's playing fantastically well. Hopefully we will continue to see him progress."

And Villas-Boas will be hoping Holtby wins Saturday's battle of the new signings against Sissoko and company, delivering Tottenham the three points and continue their drive for a top-four finish and in the process, keep the chasing pack at bay.

"We want to build a gap over the teams that are chasing us and bridge the gap to those at the top," Villas-Boas said. "It can go either way. Everton have a difficult away fixture (at Manchester United) this weekend, Arsenal have one too (at Sunderland).

"If we want to be able to profit in some way from these two fixtures, we have to get the result against Newcastle.

"We have to do our job."

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.