How does it feel to be selected by your fellow professionals as the PFA Young Player of the Year?
I was a bit surprised because defenders don’t normally get these awards and get the limelight as much as the centre-forwards but I try to get forward as much as I can so I can get the limelight too but it is a team game and my teammates have helped me out massively in getting this award and I owe it to them as well.
If you look at the people I was up against, it is a great honour to get the award and hopefully there is more to come. It is always an honour to be selected by the people you play against and, like I say, hopefully I can get a few more of these and some medals with Tottenham along the way.
I have had a mad three years in my football career so far, I have made my England debut and also had a little boy, so who knows what is round the corner. It has been a mad but positive year.
How much of a debt do you owe the manager?
Harry [Redknapp] gave me the opportunity to play this season in a great team like Tottenham, he has put his trust in me, and that is what I wanted to do since I joined Tottenham and I have to say a big thanks to him for believing in me.
When I came here there was [Pascal] Chimbonda, [Alan] Hutton, Charlie [Vedran Corluka] and Kyle [Naughton]. I saw myself as fifth choice. I went back to Sheffield United to get more games under my belt, which is the main thing for me. When I started playing I grew in confidence, I started to believe in myself. Some of those players left, went to other clubs and then it was me, Kyle and Charlie. I thought, why not? Me and Charlie are different players, he’s more of a defensive right-back. He’s a great footballer, he’s clever upstairs. I want to excite people, get forward and attack.
What do you remember of your first season at Spurs?
I played against Portsmouth the season I joined. Coming from Sheffield, I never been out of Sheffield before so coming to Tottenham, suddenly I’m sitting two places down from Peter Crouch and thinking ‘what’s happened here’. I’ve adapted to it quite well, I’m still learning and hopefully my career keeps going. London is home now. My family is here, my little boy and girlfriend. My mum and dad are in Sheffield, I get there when I can.
What are your aims for the remainder of the season?
We have got four important games left this season, we need maximum points to try and get into the Champions League. It has been a great season for me personally, what I wanted to do ever since I joined Tottenham and hopefully there are many more years to come of this. I will take one step at a time, keep my feet on the ground and keep learning. My career has just started, hopefully it won’t stop here. I want more England caps and to play for Tottenham for years to come, I want to win trophies here.