Tottenham Hotspur defender Jan Vertonghen has explained why he took the captain’s armband from Eden Hazard for Belgium’s clash with Cyprus last night.

Earlier this week Vertonghen told the Belgian media Hazard would still be Roberto Martinez’s skipper, even though he was set to break the appearance record for his country.

The Tottenham defender explained: “Eden offered me the captain’s band, but that kind of thing… it’s not for me at all. 

“Eden is our captain, I don’t have the ambition to wear this captain’s band now. Not in Sarajevo and also against Cyprus. It is very kind of Eden that he wants to do that, that is what makes him happy. I thanked him too.”

Walfoot have reported on comments the Tottenham star made after his side’s 4-0 victory, when quizzed about taking the captaincy from Hazard. “Yes because Eden insisted, but for me it doesn’t change anything. Today we missed 7, 8 players, but we did not lose in quality. It’s the strength of this group and that’s what gives me the most pleasure.”

Last night Vertonghen surpassed legendary midfielder Jan Ceulemans, and the Tottenham player is now out on his own with 97 appearances for the Red Devils.

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The 30 year old will be able to add to this after Belgium’s qualification for next year’s World Cup, and Martinez’s side will be one of the favourites to win the tournament.

Despite resting key players like Romelu Lukaku and Kevin De Bruyne, at least from the starting line-up, Belgium ran out comfortable winners in Brussels on Tuesday night, and they’ll be a force to be reckoned with in Russia.