Luka Modric never doubted his ability to flourish in the Premier League.
The Croatian midfielder has got better and better in his debut season and catapulted himself to the next level in terms of national awareness the when he drilled home a superb winner against Chelsea at the weekend.
Pundits questioned whether or not Luka would be able to handle the physical side of the game in England but he feels he's now proved himself with a string of fine displays on the left side of midfield where he's free to wander in off his flank and get involved centrally - as he did to devastating affect against Chelsea.
"Everyone has a different view on football but I didn't have a fear that I wouldn't be good enough in England," said Luka.
"I believe in myself and my quality and I think I've proved that I can play here. I think I'm playing better and better.
"All my career, people have asked if I'd be strong enough and that started when I went to play in the Bosnian League (when he was only 17) and then in the Croatian League and even for the Croatian national team.
"A lot of people wondered if I would be able to do it but it's never bothered me. It's just people talking. I've come through much harder things than to worry about that."
It's not all been plain sailing though, as Luka explained: "It's not easy. I come from Croatia and the league isn't as strong. Here, everything is different.
"Everything is much quicker. You have no time to settle on the ball. That was difficult to get used to when I first came here. I feel I've got better since Harry (Redknapp) came to the club. I'm getting used to the speed of football and the fact that I won't get a lot of time on the ball. You need to think quickly here."
Harry has spoken regularly about Luka in recent weeks and was happy to do so again after the Chelsea win. "He's a special footballer with amazing ability," he said.
"But as I said before, he's not a lightweight footballer. He's physically strong and not afraid to mix it. He played in central midfield against Stoke and ran the game. He's a top-class player, without a doubt."
Luka was naturally elated after scoring the winner against Chelsea. "It was a great performance and a great goal. It meant a lot to me. I think I've now proved to people who doubted me that I can play in England."