Having made his breakthrough into the Tottenham Hotspur side this season, Ryan Mason will head into the summer break finally feeling like a footballer.
Mason has been at White Hart Lane since signing up for their academy as a 16-year-old in 2007, but he has taken a somewhat circuitous route to their first team. After making his debut as a late substitute in a UEFA Cup tie against NEC Nijmegen in November 2008, he went on to have loan spells at Yeovil Town, Doncaster Rovers, Millwall, French side Lorient, and Swindon Town.
But after impressing Mauricio Pochettino in the pre-season tour of the United States, the 23-year-old was named in Tottenham’s Premier League squad and he made his first start in a 1-1 draw at rivals Arsenal in September. He has now made a total of 34 appearances for the Londoners this season, and as the campaign draws to a close, he admits he finally feels satisfied.
“It’s been a breakthrough season,” the Enfield-born midfielder revealed. “I’m delighted how it’s been. The challenge now is to carry on and keep improving for next season. It is the first time I am going into a break feeling like a footballer. After the next three games I’ll look forward to it, but probably within a couple of weeks I will be dying to get back into it and pre-season.”
So promising have Mason’s performances been he has also won recognition at international level, winning his first cap for England when he came on as a substitute to assist club-mate Andros Townsend in a 1-1 friendly draw with Italy in Turin. If he continues to impress during the 2015/16 campaign, he will no doubt be hoping to force his way into Roy Hodgson’s plans for Euro 2016.
How impressive has Ryan Mason been for Tottenham Hotspur this season, and can be force his way into the England team and play a key role at Euro 2016?