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Spurs have only triumphed away from home against the Gunners once in the last 20 league seasons, and their manager is eager to upset the history books next Sunday

Tottenham boss Andre Villas-Boas has underlined his desire to help the club correct its poor record against north London rivals Arsenal.

Prior to earning a 3-2 victory at the Emirates Stadium under Harry Redknapp during the 2010-11 campaign, Spurs had gone 18 seasons without earning an away league victory against their close neighbours.

But, with his side going into next Sunday's derby having won their opening two fixtures of the new season, Villas-Boas is hoping for an important three points.

"At the moment we have six points, last season we had two from three games," he said. "Obviously we go to Arsenal, it is a different type of game, a great rivalry and anything can happen. We haven't been very successful there over the last few years, and we hope to take this mentality forward.”

The Portuguese also remained coy on Gareth Bale's seemingly imminent move to Real Madrid, after the Welshman was photographed in Spain over the weekend.

Villas-Boas explained: "It is very, very difficult for me to help you on this situation. There is interest from Real Madrid, but I am not sure whether the transfer will happen or not, hopefully you will have more news in the next couple of days, but at the moment there is nothing I can tell you."

And, when asked whether his star player could yet stay at White Hart Lane, the 35-year-old replied: "That is always a possibility.

"We allowed him two days off. We never forced unselected players to be in our games. It's my decision for last season onwards. The way that I run the squad, he is not obliged to be present in our games, and he choose wherever he wants to be."

With Tottenham having missed out on signing Willian from Anzhi Makhachkala after a late Chelsea bid interrupted his medical, Villas-Boas was also cautious on the potential arrival of Vlad Chiriches from Steaua Bucharest.

"There is an interest in the player, maybe somebody steals him as well," he continued. "We've looked to strengthen at the back with the departure of Caulker, it's part of the squad to have four central defenders."

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