Johnny Heitinga issues hands-off David Moyes warning to Tottenham Hotspur

Everton defender Johnny Heitinga has publicly spoken about the idea of David Moyes leaving the club for Tottenham, should the managerial vacancy open up at White Hart Lane - and made it clear he'd like the Scot to remain at Goodison, where he has done an "unbelievable" job.

In a week in which Fabio Capello tendered his resignation from his post with the national team, Spurs boss Harry Redknapp has emerged as the clear favourite to succeed him at the end of the season.

Should Redknapp leave White Hart Lane to manage England, Spurs will be left to replace a manager who has led them to the Champions League quarter-finals and now has them challenging for the Premier League title.

That would by no means be an easy task, but rumours have begun to circulate this week that Moyes would be the stand-out name on a short-list of suitable candidates should Redknapp depart.

The 48-year-old Moyes has become slightly frustrated in recent years by the lack of funds at his disposal at Goodison Park, and may entertain the idea of a fresh challenge.

He has been with the Toffees since 2002 and is the third longest-serving manager in the Premier League behind only Arsene Wenger (appointed at Arsenal in 1996) and Sir Alex Ferguson (who became Manchester United boss in 1986).

Dutch international Heitinga, though, believes that Moyes' long reign at Goodison Park is due to the club and manager being made for one another.

"It is all rumours and you need to wait to see what will happen. It's not up to me," he said. "But the manager has been here for 10 years and, in my eyes, he is the right person for this club. He is the right man for Everton.

"In the past, Everton were fighting to stay in the league; a few years later they were playing in the FA Cup Final and fighting for a Champions League place.

"Moyes is the right man for us. What he has done is unbelievable.

"Behind Ferguson and Wenger, he is the third longest serving manager. He is vital to everything Everton want to do. The fans here love him and he is the main reason why the club has been doing so well."

Everton have failed to reach the sparkling heights of previous seasons this year as they currently languish in the lower echelons of the Premier League, but having beaten Manchester City recently and with a fifth-round home tie against Blackpool in the FA Cup seen as a golden opportunity for a quarter-final spot, Heitinga insists that this season can prove to be a successful one.

"In my first season we beat all the big teams at home, and we have just beaten City too, but the spirit is always good at Everton," he said. "You can see the confidence coming back.

"Hopefully we can start looking up the table, not down, because in my eyes we are still too low for a club like Everton. Everyone knows we have a small squad and not a lot to spend, but hopefully that will get better now - especially at home.

"In the first part of the season our form just wasn't good enough. But we are coming back, and we have a good record against Chelsea, so we are confident."

The 28-year-old has been a big factor in turning around the Toffees' season. Everton have conceded 27 goals this season, which ranks as the sixth-best defence in the league.

Much of this is down to Heitinga's outstanding form at the back, where he has cemented the centre-half slot as his own, in the absence of Phil Jagielka. Despite talk of a move away in the summer, Heitinga is focused solely on Everton.

"I'm still linked with moves away!" added Heitinga. "But I can tell you now - I will stay at Everton. I have got another two years and I am happy here. Hopefully in the future we can win a trophy."

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