By Will Butcher
Jan Vertonghen will escape retrospective disciplinary action after Tottenham’s 4-1 victory over Southampton on Wednesday night, according to a reliable journalist.
Fans had feared that the 29-year-old would miss the London showdown against Chelsea on January 4, after replays showed he swung his hand into striker Jay Rodriguez’s face in the second half of the clash at St Mary’s Stadium.
But Guardian football writer David Hytner revealed on his personal Twitter account that Vertonghen will be available for the game against the Blues early next month.
FWIW, Vertonghen will not face any retrospective disciplinary action from the FA for his hand-in-face vs Rodriguez last night #thfc
— David Hytner (@DaveHytner) December 29, 2016
The Belgium international is automatically set to miss Spurs’ clash against Watford on Sunday, after picking up his fifth yellow card of the season.
But retrospective action on the former Ajax defender for the Rodriguez incident would have potentially seen Vertonghen miss more than just one game for Mauricio Pochettino’s side.
However, his swipe has appeared to have been overlooked and will now be available to face Antonio Conte’s league leaders, as well as Aston Villa in the FA Cup third round.
Spurs secured all three points at St. Mary’s thanks to a brace from Dele Alli, and strikes from Heung-Min Son and Harry Kane despite the latter missing a penalty in the second half.
The win for the north London giants sees Pochettino and the rest of his side move to within just one point of fourth placed Arsenal, who next face Crystal Palace.
Spurs will be hoping their bitter rivals will slip up against Sam Allardyce’s new side on New Year’s Day, as they look to leapfrog the Gunners into fourth with a win against Watford.
In other Tottenham news, Ossie Ardiles has delivered this Twitter verdict after the win against Claude Puel’s Saints.