Hemel Hempstead’s Harry Winks says he is ‘over the moon’ after signing a new deal with Premier League giants Tottenham Hotspur.
The 19-year-old central midfielder, who has put pen to paper on a contract until 2018 with the option of an additional further year, revealed how he was on holiday with his family in Mexico when he first got the call to inform him of the club’s offer.
Speaking to www.tottenhamhotspur.com Winks said: “I was one, maybe two weeks into my holiday and relaxing in Mexico when I got the call to say that the club was offering me a new contract – as you can imagine, it was great to hear that news.
“I was over the moon when I was told. It didn’t quite sink in straight away, but when everything settled down again I was delighted.”
Winks made his first team debut for Spurs in their Europa League victory over Partizan Belgrade last November, but the former Cavendish School pupil insists he is keeping his feet firmly on the ground.
“For me, it’s just about taking it a step at a time, month-by-month,” he said. “It’s fantastic to sign a new contract now, but I’ve still got a long way to go.
“I need to keep working hard and trying to prove myself every day.”
A regular for Tottenham’s U21s last term, Winks earned his first senior start in the club’s post-season friendly against a Malaysia XI in Kuala Lumpur in May.
Having completed the full 90 minutes of that 2-1 victory, he also featured in Spurs’ 1-0 win over Sydney FC in Australia later that week.
Unfazed by playing in such a high-profile environment, Winks said the opportunities he’s been afforded so far by Mauricio Pochettino have been a huge boost to his development.
“I’ve enjoyed every minute of it, I love being involved,” he added. “I felt really comfortable on the tour, I enjoyed all of it and obviously I was delighted that the gaffer even gave me the opportunity to start in Malaysia.
“It was encouraging that he trusted me and I felt like I played well in the game. I grew into it as the match went on and I learned a lot about playing in the first team environment.”
It has been a steady rise to the top for Winks, who had been part of Tottenham’s academy since he started at Cavendish in 2007.
He managed to juggle a strict training regime alongside his studies – finishing his final exam to the news that he had been selected for the England U17 squad for the Nordic Tournament in 2012.