Tottenham Hotspur youngster Dominic Ball has told The Scottish Sun that he thinks he can challenge for a first-team place at White Hart Lane once his Rangers loan spell ends.
Ball, 20, was initially on the books at Watford before moving on to Tottenham in 2011, and after a loan spell with Cambridge United last season, Ball was farmed out again this term, joining Rangers on a season-long deal back in August.
A centre back by trade, Ball has recently been following in the footsteps of Tottenham star Eric Dier by switching to play as a holding midfielder, and he has helped protect the Rangers back four in recent games, including Saturday's 0-0 draw with Kilmarnock.
With 19 appearances for Rangers so far, Ball has been gaining some valuable first-team football at Ibrox, and is developing well under Mark Warburton.
Now, Ball has spoken to The Scottish Sun about playing for Rangers, and says he has matured since moving up to Glasgow, and believes his versatility is helping him become a more rounded player.
Ball also addressed his situation at Tottenham, stating that he thinks manager Mauricio Pochettino is 'brilliant' - and whilst his contract expires at the end of the season, he wants to stay at White Hart Lane and fight for a first-team place, just as other youth products have under Pochettino.
"I’ve played 19 or 20 games now in front of 50,000 fans against good opposition," said Ball. "It’s exactly what Spurs wanted and it’s exactly what I wanted as well. Joining Rangers was about getting games but I think I’ve grown up massively too. I’ve matured on and off the pitch and just being in the changing room with first-team players develops you so much. My contract at Tottenham is up at the end of next season but I feel I can go back and challenge."
"The manager there is brilliant. He probably knew it was best for me to go out and get some game time. But you look at the players there – Ryan Mason, Danny Rose, Kyle Walker, Harry Kane – and pretty much the whole team has been on loan. You come back and play when you’re ready.
"I’ve used what I’ve learned as a centre-half to look at what I’d want a holding midfielder to do. I actually got signed to Spurs as an attacking midfielder — but I got taller and taller and got worse and worse! I dropped back to centre-half and developed from there. But I’m a versatile player. I can play left-back, right-back, centre-back, midfield. I think that helps you," he added.
Will Ball win a new contract at Tottenham?