Jan Bert Lieve Vertonghen, more commonly known as Jan Vertonghen, is a Belgian professional footballer who plays for the Portuguese club Benfica and the Belgian national team. His primary position is as a central defender, but he can also play as a left-back. During his senior career, Vertonghen appeared in 220 games and scored 28 goals for Dutch club Ajax in all competitions, serving as their captain from 2011 to 2012. He won two Eredivisie titles and two KNVB Cup titles during his time at the club, and in 2012 he was named Dutch Footballer of the Year. In his first Premier League season, Vertonghen made the PFA Team of the Year after moving to Tottenham Hotspur in July 2012.
Over eight years, he made 315 appearances for Tottenham and won the club’s player of the year award in 2018. The 136 caps Vertonghen has won for Belgium (including three unofficial games, according to FIFA rules) make him the most capped player in the history of the national team. Belgian squads, he was a part of finished fourth at the Olympic Games in 2008. They reached the quarterfinals of the FIFA World Cup in 2014, UEFA Euro 2016, and Euro 2020, and finished third at the 2018 World Cup.
Jan Vertonghen Bio/Wiki[table id=3175 /]
The following Jan Vertonghen Biography tells you about his Childhood, Early Life, Parents, Family, Wife, Lifestyle, Net Worth, and Personal Life. In a nutshell, I will share with you the story of a Football Genius known as “Super Jan”. Woodgram begins the Belgian’s bio with his earliest days, up until the time when he became famous.
Yes, everyone knows about his rise to dominance in the premier league but not many consider Jan Vertonghen’s biography, which is quite interesting. Without further ado, here we go.
His full name is Jan Bert Lieve Vertonghen. It was on the 24th of April 1987 that he was born in Sint-Niklaas, Belgium, a town where football brings hope to the people.
Spurs legend Paul Vertonghen was born as the first child of Ria Mattheeuws and Paul Vertonghen. Jan’s childhood story is interesting, if not uncommon – it revolves around the life of a wonderful firstborn child who becomes an extraordinary talent.
As Jan grew up, he developed a steely determination to accomplish his dreams. Childhood dreams of becoming a professional footballer drove him to work hard every single day. It wasn’t just a passing fancy. It became a footstep he, his brother Lode, and Ward followed.
Vertonghen spent time at VK Tielrode and Germinal Beerschot before joining AFC Ajax’s youth academy. At Ajax, Vertonghen’s breakthrough was delayed by the presence of another Belgian, Thomas Vermaelen.
Later on, however, he progressed to the club’s senior team after outgrowing all club ranks. During the 2008-09 season, the young defender broke through. Vertonghen became Thomas Vermaelen’s first-choice partner in central defense when John Heitinga left for Atletico Madrid.
Eventually, he became Ajax club captain, following in the footsteps of Johann Cruyff. In 2011-12, Jan won the Eredivisie Player of the Year award. Ajax won their second title in a row thanks to his eight goals in 31 league games, highlighting his offensive capabilities.
Top European teams sought his services due to his rising importance. However, Tottenham ultimately won the race to sign him. As they say, the rest is history.
His many years in the Netherlands, his home country, has brought Jan Vertonghen, so much love. Sophie, a theater arts teacher, is the love of his life. In 2014, Jan Vertonghen announced via Instagram that he and his girlfriend Sophie de Vries had just gotten engaged.
After investing in football, Jan Vertonghen and his family came from a middle-class family. Ria Vertonghen finds time to make a catalog of her favorite son’s football collections, based on his international and club careers.
Ward and Lode Vertonghen is Jan Vertonghen’s younger brothers. In their football careers, both brothers followed in the footsteps of their elder brother Jan, but with lesser success. Lode Vertonghen is Jan Vertonghen’s younger brother. He was born on Feb 5, 1990, making him 3 years younger than Jan.
At the time of writing, Lode Vertonghen is playing for KFC Duffel (Belgian lower league) as a defensive midfielder. The youngest brother of Jan Vertonghen is Ward Vertonghen, another footballer from the lower Belgian league.
Vertonghen scored a bizarre goal in 2006 when he attempted to pass the ball to an injured opponent’s goalkeeper. To make up for this goal, Ajax allowed the opposition to score one back. This is a shining example of fair play.
Jan Vertonghen Net Worth
How much does he earn in 2023?
The defender signed a contract with Benfica in 2021 that nets him a salary of 3 million euros (2.2 million pounds) per year. Based on our calculations, he earns €16,393 (£14,403) per day and €683 (£600) per hour![table id=3176 /]
Since he has been one of the highest-paid Spurs players for several seasons, Jan Vertonghen has a net worth of approximately 25 million euros (21.9 million pounds). His market value is slightly declining, however, as he is getting a tad older and as we all know, old age has no mercy. Even so, his current market value is still okay-ish: $2.20 million.
- Vertonghen spent time at VK Tielrode and Germinal Beerschot before moving to the Netherlands and signing with the youth academy of Eredivisie side AFC Ajax.
- He began his career as a midfielder before switching to center-back for Ajax. He became better known for an incident in the 2006 KNVB Cup game against Cambuur Leeuwarden. This was his first home game at the Amsterdam Arena, in which he scored a goal to put Ajax 3–0 up.
- As a teammate was receiving treatment, he attempted a back pass to the Cambuur goalkeeper, but instead, the ball rolled into the goal. Ajax left Cambuur with the opportunity to score in return since it was unintentional.
- Vertonghen made his first-team debut against Copenhagen in the Champions League third qualifying round on 23 August 2006.
- He played in two more matches for the first half of the season after making his Eredivisie debut in a 6–0 win over Willem II at the Amsterdam Arena.
Loan to RKC
During the 2006–07 season, he was sent on loan to struggling RKC Waalwijk for the remainder of the season. At RKC, he scored three times in 12 matches, but could not prevent the team from relegation to the Eerste Divisie. In a 2–2 draw with his parent club, Ajax, he scored one of his goals with RKC Waalwijk. This helped Ajax finish second in the league with one fewer goal difference than PSV.
Breakthrough at Ajax
- Ajax tipped Vertonghen for stardom in the 2007–08 season, but a severe injury and the presence of John Heitinga and Thomas Vermaelen prevented him from breaking through.
- Cruyff had been open about his admiration for the left-footed youngster capable of playing in any left-sided position in defense and midfield. He extended his contract to 30 June 2013 on 26 September 2008.
- 2008-09 was a breakthrough season for the young defender. When John Heitinga left for Atlético Madrid, Vertonghen was Thomas Vermaelen’s first choice in central defense; the former started 23 of 26 games he played and scored four goals.
- In a 3–0 victory over Vitesse on 28 September, he scored a rare double. The 24-year-old was injured during training during the week but still played in the match against Groningen on 24 January, which was considered a “must-win” match by coach Marco van Basten.
- In Ajax’s 1–0 loss, Vertonghen received two yellow cards and was sent off. Following a hamstring injury sustained against Utrecht on 1 March, he was out for a month, from Utrecht. However, he played only a few games before another injury ended his season prematurely.
Rising importance under Jol
- For the 2009–10 season, Vertonghen retained his place in the starting lineup under new coach Martin Jol. After injuring his toe while on international duty against Spain the week before, he scored his first goal of the season in a 6–0 thrashing of NAC Breda on 13 September.
- After the departure of Thomas Vermaelen to Arsenal, he and fellow Belgian Toby Alderweireld were the first choice center-back pairing and became firm fan favorites.
- Despite Ajax’s erratic form in the final weeks leading up to the winter break, he turned in some strong performances. He attracted the attention of several clubs, including Barcelona, but he played down the rumors, stating his intent to see out the remainder of his contract.
- Vertonghen played a key role in Ajax’s nine-game unbeaten streak in the league after the winter break. A penalty awarded to PSV ended their run of six consecutive clean sheets in a 4–1 victory over them at home.
- Vertonghen was linked with a move to Newcastle United, and later with Milan stating, “I heard Milan Director Adriano Galliani talk about me after the Champions League match in San Siro.”
- He stated on numerous occasions late in the 2010–11 season that he was considering leaving Ajax.
- Earlier this year, Frank de Boer confirmed Manchester City boss Roberto Mancini was at the 2011 KNVB Cup Final where Vertonghen’s side lost 3–2 to Twente.
- Mancini reportedly scouted Vertonghen to strengthen his team after they qualified for the UEFA Champions League 2011–12.
Breakthrough under De Boer
- After several regular players were sent out on long-term loans, Vertonghen emerged as one of Ajax’s most valuable players during the 2011–12 Eredivisie season.
- In recognition of his outstanding performance against Manchester United in the UEFA Europa League Round of 16, he was named the 2011–12 Eredivisie Player of the Year.
- Captained by Frank de Boer, he led Ajax to their second title in a row, scoring eight goals in 31 league games, highlighting his attacking abilities.
- He also dropped the Championship plate for the second time. “Now it falls on my toe – the plate just doesn’t like me,” Vertonghen said.
- Vertonghen was linked with Tottenham Hotspur throughout the 2011–12 season and publicly expressed his desire to move to White Hart Lane over other clubs.
- This was primarily due to his desire to play as a center-back, with Arsenal wanting to use him as a defensive midfielder.
- In July 2012, Tottenham agreed to a fee and terms for Vertonghen pending a medical.
- Tottenham announced on 12 July that they had officially signed Vertonghen for 12 million Euros after his medical was a success. Vertonghen made his Tottenham debut in a friendly win over Brentford on 14 July and scored his first goal for the club in a 3–0 win against Carlisle United in the third round of the Football League Cup on 26 September.
- Verstonghen scored his first Premier League goal against Manchester United in a 2–3 win at Old Trafford, but it was later ruled to be an own goal by Jonny Evans.
- In the league for Tottenham on 16 December, he scored the only goal in a win over Swansea City at White Hart Lane.
- On 10 March, Vertonghen scored a brace in a losing effort against Liverpool. He was named Premier League Player of the Month for March 2013, making him the second Belgian to win it and the 12th Spurs player to win it.
- Vertonghen was sent off during Tottenham’s Europa League quarter-final second leg against Basel on 11 April 2013. Despite a 4–4 draw on aggregate, Tottenham lost the tie 4–1 on penalties.
- In defense, Vertonghen was named to the 2012–13 PFA Team of the Year with Rio Ferdinand, Leighton Baines, and Pablo Zabaleta.
- During a League Cup match with Aston Villa in September, Nicklas Helenius gained notoriety when Jan Vertonghen pulled down his shorts during a goal attempt, revealing his briefs.
- In the following match against Chelsea, during which Fernando Torres was sent off, Chelsea coach José Mourinho believed Vertonghen shouldn’t have played due to the Helenius incident in which he alleged Vertonghen had left the striker “nak*d”.
- Vertonghen seemed out of favor with new manager Mauricio Pochettino at the beginning of the 2014–15 season.
- He gave Vertonghen limited playing time, preferring Younès Kaboul and Federico Fazio. Kaboul lost his position, however, to Vertonghen, who formed an effective partnership with Fazio.
- Together, they had 11 wins and only one loss throughout 15 games. On 1 March 2015, Vertonghen started the 2015 League Cup Final for Tottenham, but they lost to Chelsea 2–0 at Wembley Stadium.
- At the start of the 2015-16 season, Vertonghen was joined in defense by former Ajax teammate and compatriot Alderweireld.
- During the first ten games of the season, Vertonghen and Alderweireld played ten of the games together, with Spurs only losing one. He suffered a medial knee ligament injury late in January 2016 and was unable to play for 11 weeks.
- Tottenham beat Manchester United 3–0 at home on 10 April 2016 in the first home league victory for Tottenham against Manchester United since 2001.
- The partnership with Alderweireld in the defense was considered a key to the club’s joint-lowest goal conceded total in the Premier League that season.
- Vertonghen signed a new contract with Tottenham on 2 December 2016. Vertonghen suffered an ankle ligament injury in mid-January 2017, which would keep him out for five weeks.
- On 19 February, he was recalled to the team for the fifth-round FA Cup match against Fulham at Craven Cottage.
- Vertonghen was part of Tottenham’s defense that achieved the best defensive record in the Premier League, with only 26 goals conceded, 6 more than the previous record of 32 conceded in the 1908–09 season in the Second Division. At the time, he was considered one of the best defenders in the Premier League.
- Vertonghen scored his first goal for the club since October 2013 in the 3–0 win over Wimbledon in the third round of the 2017–18 FA Cup on 7 January 2018.
- He appeared in 36 Premier League games this season, as well as six UEFA Champions League matches and five cup matches.
- Vertonghen scored Tottenham’s first goal of the 2018–19 season eight minutes into the game against Newcastle United, helping the team to a 2–1 victory.
- His hamstring injury occurred in the game against Huddersfield on 29 September, and he was sidelined for two months. He returned to the starting lineup in the Champions League game against Inter Milan in late November.
- His contract with Tottenham was extended until 2020 in December. In the Champions League last 16 round, Vertonghen played left wing-back against Borussia Dortmund, scoring one goal and providing one assist in a 3–0 victory.
- UEFA named him the Champions League Player of the Week for his performance in this match.
- During the semifinal of the Champions League, he suffered a head injury after colliding with Toby Alderweireld.
- Spurs won their first Champions League final after he returned to play in Amsterdam wearing a protective mask and helped the team to a dramatic win against Ajax.
- In the following and final season with Tottenham, Vertonghen revealed he suffered concussion symptoms, such as dizziness and headaches, for nine months after the collision.
- A late goal like the winning goal by Vertonghen helped Wolverhampton Wanderers win 2–1 on the road in the 2019–20 season.
- He scored his 300th Tottenham goal in a 2–1 home comeback win over Brighton & Hove Albion on 26 December 2019.
- Vertonghen’s contract was originally set to expire on 30 June 2020, but due to the COVID-19 stoppage, it has been extended to the end of the 2019–20 campaign.
- Following Crystal Palace’s match against the club in the last game of the season, he became a free agent. Vertonghen did not play in the game.
- Benfica announced his signing on August 14, 2020. He will sign a three-year contract. A one-leg loss of 2–1 in the third qualifying round of the Champions League saw him score an own goal in his debut against Greece’s PAOK FC on 15 September.
- The following week, he played in the Primeira Liga for the first time, winning 5-1 against Famalicão in the season opener.
- Vertonghen scored his first goal for Benfica in a Europa League match against Lech Poznan on 3 December 2020.
- Vertonghen made his international debut at the under-21 level in 2006 and participated in the 2007 UEFA U21 Championships.
- In UEFA Euro 2008 qualification, he made his senior debut for the national team in a 2–1 loss to Portugal at home on 2 June 2007.
- During the game, he was fouled by substitute striker Hugo Almeida, who was sent off. Also selected for the 2008 Olympics, Vertonghen played in every match as the Belgians finished fourth.
- In the 2010 World Cup qualifying, he became a regular, initially at center-back as Thomas Vermaelen’s partner.
- In an August 2009 friendly against the Czech Republic, he scored his first international goal.
- In a World Cup qualifier away match against Spain, he injured his toe and had to be stretchered off and substituted in the 29th minute. The match ended in a 5–0 loss as well.
- Usually, he plays left-back now that Vermaelen and Vincent Kompany are the preferred pairings in central defense. He was in the starting eleven for the 3–0 win over Hungary and the 1–0 loss to Croatia the following March.
- Vertonghen was named to Belgium’s squad for the 2014 FIFA World Cup on 13 May 2014. The African side was awarded a penalty against Algeria after Vertonghen pulled down Sofiane Feghouli and received a yellow card.
- Algeria took the lead from the penalty spot through Feghouli, but Belgium came back to win 2–1. On 22 June, Thomas Vermaelen replaced him in the starting line-up for the second match against Russia.
- In the 2014–15 season, Vertonghen knocked a child unconscious with a misplaced shot during a training session with the Belgian squad.
- In 2016, he suffered two ligament tears in his ankle in an accident during training before Belgium’s quarter-final match against Wales, and as a result, missed the match.
- On the same day that he made his international debut, Vertonghen won his 100th cap (the first in Belgian history), which was presented to him by his mother.
- At the 2018 World Cup in Russia, Vertonghen scored the winning goal in Belgium’s comeback from a 2-0 deficit against Japan. He headed from 20 yards out to the far post in a 3–2 comeback victory.
Facts About Jan Vertonghen
- Vertonghen loved playing football as a child. He spent his early years with VK Tielrode. During his junior footballing days, he was a player for Germinal Beerschot and Ajax.
- He also played for the under 16 and 21 national teams of Belgium.
- He made his debut with Ajax. He played at center-back for Ajax. In his first game in the Amsterdam Arena, he scored a goal to give Ajax a 3–0 lead.
- In 2012, he debuted for Tottenham Hotspur. Tottenham won 3–2 in a friendly match against Brentford in his debut as a Spur. In a 3–0 win against Carlisle United, he netted his first goal for the club.
- During the 2007-2008 season, Vertonghen was a member of the Belgian national football team, where he played his first match in Portugal.
- Vertonghen also made the 2008 Olympic team.
- In Vertonghen’s time at Ajax, he played as the center of defense, and he scored a rare brace against Vitesse in a 3–0 win.
- In 2011-12, he was named the AFC Ajax player of the year. During the year 2012, he was selected as Dutch footballer of the year.
- Vertonghen then scored two goals against Liverpool. In March 2013, he was named Premier League Player of the Month.
- In defense, he was also named to the 2012–13 PFA Team of the Year alongside Rio Ferdinand, Leighton Baines, and Pablo Zabaleta.
- He played for Ajax for six years and scored 23 goals during that time. He was loaned to RKC Waalwijk for the 2006-2007 season.
At his best, Jan Vertonghen is an impressive defender. He can position himself in such a way that he rarely has to ground due to excellent vision and reading of the game. Vertonghen prefers to arrive promptly and lift the ball with minimal force rather than dive into tackles.
Sophie de Vries
Belgium national football team
After Spurs decided not to renew his contract, Vertonghen left the club at the end of the season. Vertonghen has signed a three-year contract with Benfica after leaving Tottenham. After the club decided not to renew his contract, he left Spurs at the end of the season.
Jan and Sophie are blessed with two sons and a daughter. The couple became parents for the first time after the birth of their daughter Leyla a year after their union. They welcomed their son in 2017.