Udinese of Italy central defender, William Troost-Ekong has been cited in a survey of current top-rate players that passed through the academy of English Premier League side, Tottenham Hotspur.
Although Troost-Ekong only recently revealed that he was not given a chance to prove himself during his days with Spurs, pundits have gone to town with details of his days with the London-based club.
The Super Eagles star lamented how he almost gave up playing, due to lack of encouragement at Spurs, where one of the coaches even told him and his mother that he would not get a successful career, yet the Holland-born stopper has gone on to star for four top clubs.
From Dodrecht and FC Groningen of Holland to Haugesund of Norway, KAA Gent of Belgium, Bursaspor of Turkey and now Udinese, Troost-Ekong has continued growing in leaps, which belie the shut-out he faced at White Hart Lane, back in the days.
He has also gone on to star at full international level for Nigeria, even now stand-in captain for the Super Eagles, after winning bronze with the under-23 national team at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games soccer event.
Troost-Ekong is cited in the roll call of Spurs’ academy products doing well elsewhere, alongside Andros Townsend, Charlie Daniels, Adam Smith, Nabil Bentaleb, Alex Pritchard, Ryan Fredericks, Reece Oxford, Keanan Bennetts, David Button, Milos Veljkovic, Joy Mukena, Ismail Azzaoui, Yuri Berchiche and Peter Crouch.
The citation for Troost-Ekong stated: “The Netherlands-born, Nigeria international spent time in both Fulham and Tottenham’s academies but made his senior breakthrough with Groningen in the country of his birth.
“Still only 25, Troost-Ekong has since played in Belgium and Turkey before moving to Serie A last summer by joining Udinese, where he has been almost ever-present in the league.”