Tottenham Hotspur's season may not have gone to plan so far, but one positive has been the emergence of Ryan Mason as first-team regular.
The 23-year-old's career had been blighted by injury previously and his only opportunities to get senior football had been out on loan.
However, Mason's performances over pre-season impressed Mauricio Pochettino enough to give him his chance and he has seized it with both hands.
After coming off the substitutes' bench against Nottingham Forest in the Capital One Cup to great effect, Mason has been a mainstay in the Tottenham squad and now appears one of the first names on the team sheet at White Hart Lane.
His performances in the centre of midfield have belied his lack of experience and Mason is determined that he will retain his place in the starting line-up as the season progresses.
“It’s great to be out there, great to be starting and it’s what I’ve wanted for a long time, so I’m not going to let up,” Mason said to the club's official site.
“The fans appreciate the home-grown players coming through and they can see what it means for us to pull on the shirt.
“As long as I’m out on the pitch I’ll give nothing less than 100 per cent.”
Pochettino has expressed a desire to bring through the club's youngsters and Mason is one of a number of players to benefit from the Argentine manager's faith.
Nabil Bentaleb and Harry Kane have also become first-team regulars already under Pochettino's stewardship, while Harry Winks was handed his first Spurs appearance in the Capital One Cup.
It has been a major improvement for Tottenham, considering their youth-academy seemed to be growing stagnant under previous regimes.
The youngsters will now be hoping to drive Spurs forward, as they look for a major up-turn in results over the Christmas period.
The Lilywhites are sitting in 10th position in the Premier League table at this stage of the season and they know that a serious improvement in results and performances will be needed if they are to meet expectations.