Jake Livermore can afford to look back at the 2011-12 campaign with pride, after making 38 appearances in all competitions in his breakthrough season with Tottenham.

His arrival on the first-team scene at White Hart Lane has been a long time coming, given that the combative midfielder joined Spurs at the tender age of just 16.

Still only 22 years of age, Livermore is regarded as one of Tottenham's brightest prospects, with Harry Redknapp expecting big things from the youngster as he continues his development in north London.

Speaking to Spurs' official website, Livermore said: "I'm proud to be a Spurs player and when I was 16 and told that they would take me on full-time, I could not have been happier."

Livermore fondly remembers the time he was told he had made the grade at Tottenham, and despite a last-ditch attempt from Arsenal, who tried to prize the Englishman away from Spurs prior to accepting their offer, insists there was only ever one option for him, and he's unequivocal in declaring his love for the club.

"It had to be Tottenham, it couldn't have been anywhere else – and, thankfully, Spurs also wanted me," he says.

Born in Enfield, Jake is not the only member of the Livermore family with a strong affiliation with Tottenham, and he owes them a great deal of gratitude for giving him the belief that he could turn his dreams into reality.

"I was also fortunate that all the family love Spurs, including my father and uncle who were particularly keen. And my mother Heather was a major influence in those early days when she would just tell me to believe, make it happen and be worthy of it when it did.

"So I shared my dream with all of them and their delight in seeing me get this far makes it even better for me. I've always been a confident type of person and I agree that that's certainly helped me along the way but you still need people behind you and I'm glad that I was able to justify their belief."

Despite seeing a number of former friends and teammates fail to impress at White Hart Lane during his early years, Livermore accepts that in football, there is no room for sentiment. As such, the youngster intends to grab his opportunity with both hands.

"When you're growing up you have so many friends and players you're playing with who don't make it and it's difficult because you sometimes think that you’ll be one of them. But I owe a lot to my family to keeping me going and keeping me strong."

If this season is anything to go by, Livermore could have a long and exciting career ahead of him, and if he gets his way, it'll be with Tottenham.

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