Darren Bent says that Tottenham midfielder Harry Winks has got a point to prove next season after penning a new long-term contract with the north London club.
The former Spurs and England star, speaking exclusively to Football Insider, claims that the 23-year-old is facing added competition for both club and country and that he has to be playing regularly for the Lilywhites to earn a return for England.
Tottenham revealed on Monday that both Winks and defender Ben Davies had committed their long-term futures to the club with five-year deals for the pair.
With a new contract in his back pocket, Bent insists Winks has a fight on his hands if he is to live up to expectations with the likes of Mason Mount and Jack Grealish breathing down his neck for a place in the Three Lions’ squad.
Asked if the 23-year-old had a point to prove, Bent told Football Insider: “Yeah, he does. Harry Winks is an exciting young player.
“He was one of them that people were talking about starting for England so he’s obviously got that to prove as well. With Harry Winks, he’s in the position now where he’s up against some good, young, English players.
“Last season he had to contend with (Ruben) Loftus-Cheek, Dele Alli, Jordan Henderson, Eric Dier. Now you throw into the mix Jack Grealish, he’s now in the right division so he’s probably going to get a call-up. Mason Mount got a call-up playing in the Championship for Derby.
“In that position there’s going to be some real key battles that whoever can lock down a position and play well for their club is going to get that England call. I’m sure Harry Winks is going to be up for the fight.”
Injury limited Winks’ playing time in the second half of last season, with just one Premier League appearance under his belt since February.
He made a total of 41 outings across all competitions under Mauricio Pochettino, 30 of those coming among the starting XI.
In the latest Tottenham news, Bent has tipped one ‘exceptional’ Leeds United star to follow Jack Clarke to Spurs.