Ryan Mason can now return to playing his natural position for Tottenham Hotspur.
Tottenham have enjoyed one of the breakthroughs of the season this year, with Eric Dier and Dele Alli establishing themselves as one of the best midfield partnerships in the Premier League.
Playing as the double-pivot in Mauricio Pochettino’s 4-2-3-1 system has seen the youngsters truly shine, and replace Ryan Mason and Nabil Bentaleb as the first-choice duo for that position.
Although the latter pair are out injured, it is hard to see how they can be selected when back to fitness, and Pochettino would be wise to continue with the Dier and Alli midfield which has worked wonders so far.
However, although Mason has now lost his place in the deeper midfield role, it could be that he starts to flourish at Spurs in his more natural position.
Mason started his career as a teenager as a gifted number 10, with keen playmaking skills and an eye for goal, and some of his senior highlights have come in the final third.
Many of his skills have gone to waste at White Hart Lane due to Pochettino’s insistence to play him as a deeper midfielder, and although he has the energy and work rate to fulfil that role, Mason should be playing further up the field of play.
And with chances of breaking into the double-pivot all but gone, it is the number 10 position which Mason should now be fighting to call his own.
He faces competition from a number of talented players, with Heung-Min Son, Christian Eriksen, Mousa Dembele and Tom Carroll also all vying for the main playmaking role, but Mason has proven he has the work ethic and desire to always be starting.
He is arguably the best player in the squad to suit Pochettino’s high-pressing system, and Mason has shown since his youth days that he is well rounded attacking player who can create play with ease.
The 24-year-old midfielder has shown himself to have all the talent and attitude to be a success in the Premier League, and whilst many may believe his chance of first-team football has gone with Alli and Dier impressing, this is the time for Mason to prove everyone wrong by claiming his natural number 10 position as his own in Pochettino’s plans.