In an exclusive interview with Football FanCast, ex-Tottenham captain Gary Mabbutt has challenged Harry Winks to keep proving himself to win back his place in Jose Mourinho’s side.
Winks has fallen down the pecking order in recent months, and hasn’t started a Premier League game since the draw with Fulham back in January.
The England midfielder had been a regular during the early parts of the campaign, although the excellent form of both Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg and Moussa Sissoko has seen the Spurs graduate restricted to mainly outings in the Europa League in recent months.
Winks came back into the side for a brief period around Christmas, but with Mourinho recently opting for just two central midfielders in a more attacking-minded set-up, his last few appearances have all come in the FA Cup and Europe.
And when speaking exclusively to FFC, Mabbutt has revealed what Winks must do in order to start playing regularly again. He said:
“I mean, when Harry first got in the side, I did an interview with Harry and I said he could be a future captain of Spurs, and last year against Wolves he was made captain for that game.
“Players have to look at where they are and have to move on from there, see what parts of the game that could be improved and keep working at it. And that is it. You don’t get to be a professional player and play your first game in the Premier League and you made it, it never works that way.
“Every single game you’re out there and you have got to prove yourself. It’s not like, you’re say a top singing star in the world and suddenly you have 20 hits and then 40 years later you get on stage and everyone’s cheering you for those 20 hits you had 40 years ago.
“As a footballer, you make your debut in the last game you played, in the next game you play you’ll be lambasted. Every single game you have to go out there and you have got to prove yourself.”
Mabbutt is spot on here. Things can change quickly in football, and a few positive performances from Winks in the Europa League could suddenly see the midfielder come back into the frame.