Tottenham defender Japhet Tanganga looking forward to playing against “idol” Ronaldo

Japhet Tanganga grew up watching Cristiano Ronaldo but could now line up against him in the Premier League.

Tottenham defender Japhet Tanganga, who grew up idolising Manchester United’s Cristiano Ronaldo, is looking forward to testing himself against the forward when they meet in the Premier League.

Tanganga, who was sent off in the 3-0 defeat against Crystal Palace over the weekend ,has come through the ranks at Tottenham and is tipped to have a great future.

The 22-year-old made his Premier League debut last year against Liverpool under Jose Mourinho and has since developed into a strong, robust and aggressive defender who is comfortable playing as a right back or in the centre of defence.

This season, Tanganga has started every league game before his sending off against Palace.

The Spurs defender recently revealed how Ronaldo inspired his journey to be a footballer and how he is hoping to measure his progress against his childhood idol.

Tanganga told Stadium Astro: “To be fair, when I was first watching football, it was Ronaldo. Cristiano Ronaldo was my idol.

“I have played against him before when we went on a pre-season tour against Juventus. Seeing him in the tunnel was surreal. I will never get over it.

“If I ever see him again when he plays for Manchester United, I’m a big fan of his. It would be an amazing thing to see him again and play against him.”

Cristiano Ronaldo of Manchester United smiles during the Premier League match (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)

Five facts about Japhet Tanganga

  • Tanganga has represented England at the U-16, U-17, U-18 and U-20 Level. 
  • Tanganga was born in Hackney, London to a Congolese mum and dad. 
  • Tanganga schooled at Greig City Academy in Harringay. 
  • Tanganga has a five year contract at Tottenham Hotspur that runs out in 2025.
  • Tanganga joined Tottenham aged 10.

Five interesting facts about Cristiano Ronaldo you might not know

  • Aged just seven, Ronaldo had to undergo heart surgery because it beat too fast when it was at rest.
  • Cristiano Ronaldo has decided not to have a tattoo because it’s a condition for donating blood. 
  • Cristiano’s father died from alcoholism when he was teenager and his brother also had drug issues. 
  • Cristiano’s favourite food is Grilled Cod with scrambled eggs and potatoes, a Portuguese dish. 
  • Cristiano has a mighty collection of cars which include Bentley Continental GTC, Audi Q7, Porsche Cayenne Turbo, Lamborghini Aventador, a Mercedes-Benz C220 CDI, a $320,000 Ferrari F430.