Andre Villas-Boas believes that facing Lyon in the Europa League knockout stages will go a long way to proving that Tottenham are ready to compete in the Champions League.

Tottenham face the high-flying Ligue 1 side in the last-32 clash on Thursday evening as Villas-Boas looks to prove that his side are good enough to compete in Europe's elite competition next season.

Andre Villas-Boas
Andre Villas-Boas is targeting Europa League success with Spurs [Reuters]

Spurs are currently in fourth place and are hopeful of securing Champions League football for just the second time since the competition began in 1992.

The former Chelsea manager has already had success in the Europa League when he led Porto to the title back in 2011. He will now be hoping he can have similar success with Tottenham who have not won any silverware since the 2008 League Cup triumph over Chelsea.

With Lyon having regularly featured in the competition, Villas-Boas believes that this is the perfect opportunity for his players to prove that they belong in the Champions League.

"This could be a test of whether we're good enough to play in the Champions League," said Villas-Boas, as quoted in The Sun.

"I think we've been handed the most difficult draw of this knock-out phase. This is like a Champions League tie."

"Lyon represent a club with tremendous Champions League experience in recent years.

"It will be a good test for Tottenham. It's always going to be a learning experience for us and I think it can serve that purpose towards the future, that's for sure."

The draw against Lyon also gives goalkeeper Hugo Lloris the chance to come up against his former club, but it seems he will have to watch from the bench as Villas-Boas confirmed that Brad Friedel would start in goal.

"Most likely Brad is going to be in goal," added the former Porto manager. "It's a decision we've already taken. We know this tie represents a lot to Hugo on a personal level but, out of respect ad confidence to Brad, we will continue to apply the same principle we have in the past and rotate the goalkeepers."