Count white space between words in a string

How do i count white space between words in a given string?
Say for example i have a string like this

$a = "Bush      sucks       big    time"; 

How can i then count the spaces between the four words?


$string = "Bush      sucks       big    time";
$counter = count_chars($string,0);
echo $counter[32] . " spaces in the phrase.";
?>

Dagnabbit!!! I forgot about substr_count();


 $string = "Bush      sucks       big    time";
 echo substr_count($string," ");

Thank you for your help Chillijan :slight_smile: