Tottenham Hotspur right-back Kyle Walker has suggested that the era of dominance of certain teams at the top of the Premier League has ended, telling the Evening Standard that the landscape of the top flight and of London has shifted.
Spurs are second in the Premier League, and will have the chance to move top of the table for the first time on Wednesday after leaders Leicester City were held to a draw by West Bromwich Albion on Tuesday evening.
When the former Sheffield United man moved to White Hart Lane in 2009, it was teams such as Chelsea and Manchester United who were the dominant forces, with Chelsea about win to a third title to add to their five domestic cup trophies in the space of nine years, and United having been named champions in each of the previous three seasons.
Since Walker has arrived, only United, Chelsea and new competitors Manchester City have won a league title, but Walker believes the recent change in fortunes for some of those clubs has opened the door to sides such as Spurs and Leicester.
The England international told the Evening Standard: "It’s good for the League that everyone is on a level playing field now, and everyone can beat everyone else. You know you’ll be in for a tough game in every London derby.
"We’ve done well this season and deserve credit for where we are, but the League is up and down.
"Who would have thought Leicester would have been top at this stage of the season? We need to keep snapping at their ankles and hope they mess up once."
Spurs travel to Upton Park on Wednesday to face another side, West Ham, who are enjoying a impressive season, with the Hammers sitting in sixth, just four points off a Champions League spot.
Tottenham have not won a top-flight title since winning the double in 1961, and their 2008 League Cup triumph is their only trophy in the 21st century.
However, the North London club are enjoying their best season for years, and with less than three months until the end of the season they are still competing for honours on both a domestic and European front.