Townsend - You have to prove you deserve a chance

Andros Townsend has given an excellent interview to the Daily Telegraph on his way back from injury in which he makes some excellent points, points that some fans often overlook.

Andros Townsend
Andros Townsend is coming back from injury
"When you're a footballer, you're disappointed when you're injured but you have to take the positive in every negative. Yes, I was injured but I had a hectic six months at the start of the season.

"It's given me the chance to reflect, recuperate, and try and come back even stronger.

"You could take it one of two ways. You could mooch around or you can take the positive and look to come back stronger. Now I'm looking to the Manchester City game to come back better than I was. I'll be ready.

"Before this, I think I'd missed one game of football since I turned professional so it was a new experience to deal with. But what I've found in my career is that you learn from new experiences. It's not the injury that counts, it's how you deal with it.

I spoke in a previous article about the mental side of a footballer and especially a young footballer. There is no doubt some do mope about, feel sorry for themselves, expect everything handed to them on a plate so his views are a joy to hear, clearly a young player with the right attitude and he has had to overcome quite a few obstacles.

This one is injury but he has been in the centre of a racism row, a betting scandal, missed out on the Under 21 European Championships, numerous loans and disenchantment from fans when he cuts inside to much and shoots into the stands.

"You always believe in your ability, you always think at the end of it you will reach the top but you have to put in the hard yards. At a massive club like Tottenham, opportunities will come, but not straight away.

"You have to get out there and prove that you deserve to have them coming your way. The only way that's going to happen is if people see you playing. That's what I did.

You have to prove you deserve to have chances coming your way, how true. That applies to players purchased as well. The training ground is where you show the manager your desire and your ability. When you are brought on or start a game it is up to you to take it to say through your performance, 'look you can't drop me now'.

Far to many fans think players are not given a chance, not given a run. You are given what you deserve, what you show the manager you want. We go back to someone like Nabil Bentaleb a teenager who simply performed from the word go. He might have been at the club a while but he hadn't played with the 1st team, he fitted in with the 'new' to him players there like an old pro. There is no reason why someone like Giovanni Dos Santos could not have done the same. Some fans and players simply like to make excuses.

"Every opportunity I had, I went out on loan. I put my skills to the test in League One, the Championship, and then finally the Premier League. That's what you have to do. You have to go out there and prove it. It makes you.

"I went back to Spurs and started my pre-season with my confidence at an all-time high. Aaron Lennon got injured and I had the opportunity. I was determined to use that chance to cement my place in the squad. I did more than I expected, if I'm honest.

Andros was fortunate that Lennon got injured early in the season otherwise we wouldn't have seen him and he certainly wouldn't have had 14 games nor played for England. He is one of the younger player who have grown with Tim Sherwood overseeing their development which may see him secure a place on the left-wing. To have him and Aaron Lennon running at full-backs is a frightening thought and forces the opposition to worry about the counter attack. That helps to tie up the full-backs and makes them less effective as an attacking force themselves.

"I worked with him [Sherwood] for four or five years in the youth set-up. He's always been supportive of my abilities, always told me not to waver from what I do, to never change from trying to take people on and make things happen.

"In that way, he's been a huge influence in my career. Hopefully now he's in charge I can start repaying his faith, break back into the Spurs team and start scoring goals for him."

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