“I just want to adapt as quickly as possible,” he said. “I’ll do the best I can, try my hardest and hopefully have a good season.”
That player was Eric Dier.
In the famous words of commentator Barry Davies, what has happened since can only be described as ‘Schoolboy’s Own stuff’.
Taking on a new holding midfield role in the summer of 2015, he’s made it his own, starting 54 of our last 57 matches (41 of 42 in the Premier League) and has racked up 12 England caps, starting every match in Euro 2016.
Below: Eric speaks exclusively to Spurs TV
His performances have been rewarded with a new contract, and he’s happily put pen to paper on a new deal committing his future to the Club until 2021.
It’s a meteoric rise the 22-year-old has taken in his stride. “It’s been an unbelievable two years, from that first interview to now, the change has been amazing and I’m so happy to continue on this journey,” said Eric.
“I’m really looking forward to the future and that’s what makes it so easy to want to stay here - the fantastic manager we have, the great Club, the fans, all the infrastructure we have, the new stadium being built – it’s all really exciting and I want to grow with the Club at the same pace."
Eric is quickly approaching 100 appearances (he’s on 91) and will no doubt soon join the eight players in the squad on 100 appearances for us.
“It’s a pleasure to come here every day and I enjoy seeing everyone, it’s like playing football with your mates,” he said. “There is a fantastic feeling around the Club. Obviously, when you play that many games for a Club and share good moments like we have over the last two years you create a very tight connection to the Club.”
Mauricio Pochettino switched Eric from a right-back/central defender to the holding midfield role and Eric cannot speak highly enough of his manager.
“It’s fantastic for us young players to have a manager with his attitude and work rate,” he said. “It’s something we all look up to.
“Every day we want to improve. We beat Stoke 4-0 on Saturday but he will want everything from us as if we lost 4-0, that’s his attitude and it’s fantastic for us young players to be around someone who is like that, always working at 100 per cent, always wanting to improve.
“He wants to improve and we want to improve. It’s a fantastic mix.”