Tottenham defender claims competition with colleague has made them better players

Tottenham Hotspur Fans

Kyle Walker's performances over this past season have greatly improved and could be attributed to the competition he has faced from Kieran Trippier.

England's Kyle Walker in action with Turkey's Hakan Calhanoglu

Tottenham Hotspur defender Kieran Trippier has told the club's official website how his competitive rivalry with colleague Kyle Walker has helped spur each other on and make them both better players.

Speaking exclusively to, Trippier lavished praise on Walker, and told of how happy he is following his teammate's inclusion in England's provisional Euro 2016 squad.

"I knew it would be difficult competing with Kyle and he’s been brilliant," he said. "We’re good mates and we wanted to drive each other on. We can only try to make each other better players.

"Kyle deserves to be in the England squad, he’s done well and kept me out of the team for most of the season. Full credit to him and hopefully he’ll do well in the summer."

Tottenham Hotspur's Kyle Walker in action with Southampton's Steven Davis

Trippier, 25, made only five Premier League appearances during the course of last season. The form of Walker has made it next to impossible for the former Burnley man to oust him from the starting XI, but Trippier believes there is only one way to force his way into the manager's plans.

"There’s nothing I can do about that apart from continuing to work hard in training," he said.

Kieran Trippier, Eric Dier and Nacer Chadli celebrates after Fiorentina's Gonzalo Rodriguez scored an own goal and the third goal for Tottenham

Come the start of next season, Trippier will be entering the prime years of his career, so sooner or later something will have to give. Either he will have to raise his game to a higher level and secure his place in Spurs' starting XI ahead of Walker, or he will have to look for a club where he would be the undisputed starting right-back.

Competition is obviously good for a player's development, but there comes a point in every player's career where too much competition can have a detrimental effect on their progress. That is the dilemma that Trippier will face in the coming years, because he is a player that many Premier League clubs would take in an instant.

If Trippier continues to work hard in training, however, and produces his best form when presented with a chance, it will leave Mauricio Pochettino with a predicament that every manager in world football would welcome, and how he deals with it will greatly influence the future of the former Burnley man.

Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino

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