Gareth, how do you feel after being voted the PFA’s Player of the Year?
It’s a massive honour. To be voted by your peers is one of the biggest things in the game. It’s great to win it and I am delighted.
How special is it that you have won both awards?
When you look at the list there are some massive names on it but I couldn’t have done it without the team. They have been fantastic this year and so has the manager. I couldn’t have won it without them so I would like to give them all a big thank you as well
The likes of Robin van Persie, Luis Suarez and Juan Mata were also on the shortlist. What do you think gave you the edge?
I don’t know really. The other nominees have been unbelievable, they have been outstanding for their clubs and it’s a massive moment to win, especially as it’s both awards and it’s something that I’m extremely proud of.
Which players have impressed you this year?
I think the same as everyone – Van Persie, Suarez, just to name two. They have been outstanding this season and it’s been a great season for everyone to watch. There is still some time to go.
What has been your favourite goal so far this season?
There are a few. The one against Norwich was one of my favourites, the West Ham one… Those two are my favourites from this season.
Your previous best goal tally was 15 in one season. You’re now on 29 goals for club and country this season. Why have you improved so much in front of goal?
Probably more shooting to be honest! I think I have come inside a lot more. I have a few less assists this year but I am in more scoring positions these days and that has obviously helped my scoring tally as we have seen this season.
Nobody has ever won the PFA Player of the Year award three times before. Is that an aim for you in the future?
I don’t really look to individual awards. The biggest thing is playing for your team and going well. If you do well then these awards come along. I don’t think individual awards are something you strive for, it’s just a bonus.
Do you think you are in the best form of your life?
Yeah, definitely. As I am getting older I am getting more experienced, more confident and I think I am taking that on to the pitch so hopefully I can continue playing in that kind of form and hopefully continue improving as a player. Hopefully I can get better.
You’ve played in more positions this year. Has that helped you become a more rounded footballer?
I definitely think it can improve you. You learn all different parts of the game. If you are struggling on the left you can go to the centre, and if you are struggling there you can move to the right so it’s obviously great being able to play in a lot of positions and it does make you a better footballer. I have enjoyed playing all the positions. My favourite is probably the central role where you play behind the striker. There you can go left, right, short, deep… It’s a role I have enjoyed and hopefully can keep improving on.
What are your ambitions for Spurs?
We have been doing fantastic this season. We still have quite a young squad when you compare us to a lot of the other teams. A lot of us are around a similar age. We have been together now for three or four years. We have grown up together and the confidence is there. We are still young, we are improving every season and hopefully we can reach our ambitions, which we know we can achieve.
Do you feel you can improve further?
Definitely. I can still improve in everything. There is still a lot for me to do. I have only just moved in to that role in the centre so there is still a lot for me to learn and hopefully I can continue to do that. As long as I keep working hard on the pitch and in training hopefully that will come true.
So it bodes well for a successful future for you?
Hopefully. I think obviously it’s a massive honour to win both awards. It’s surreal. I’m still young. I still have to keep my feet on the ground and keep working hard, keep striving to work hard as a player and there is a lot more to come from me in the future.
Would you trade both awards in now for a top-four finish with Spurs?