Holtby tips Spurs for the top
Lewis Holtby has no regrets about hitching a ride on the Tottenham bandwagon because he is convinced they are destined for the very top.
The 23-year-old quit Schalke for the lure of White Hart Lane in January.
Holtby quickly established himself as a regular under Andre Villas-Boas, only for his status to be undermined by the huge amount of change Spurs have undergone to cope with the world-record exit of Gareth Bale to Real Madrid.
In particular, the deadline-day arrival of Christian Eriksen from Ajax has closed off an avenue to Villas-Boas' first-choice line-up, hence the Germany international's selection for Tuesday night's 4-0 Capital One Cup triumph at Aston Villa.
Holtby could be forgiven a sense of frustration at how events have conspired against him.
He has no such feelings, though.
Instead he is looking forward to the campaign with relish.
"I wanted to come here," he said.
"I wanted to have this challenge.
"I could have stayed at Schalke. I could have played there all the time.
"But I wanted to fulfil my dream of playing for a top club in the Premier League.
"I know Tottenham are going to do something big and I wanted to be part of it."
Holtby likens the Tottenham situation to the one Bayern Munich faced last season, when Jupp Heynckes managed to sustain a challenge on all fronts that eventually saw them complete an historic treble.
"At Bayern Munich, everyone just did their work," Holtby said.
"The players were always patient and did their jobs for the team.
"That's why they won every title - and that's how I see it here."
Holtby has no personal animosity towards Eriksen.
Indeed, he has struck up a close personal friendship with the Dane, who was long touted as a potential Premier League player without anyone being willing to take a chance.
"I get on very well with Christian," Holtby said.
"Off the pitch we do a lot of things.
"On it when I get the opportunity I have to show that I can produce something. I need to keep working hard and putting on pressure.
"It is going to be a very tough season because we have so many games.
"I just saw the other day that we have eight games in December alone. People are going to get injured and we will need everyone."
The chances are Holtby will be back on the bench this weekend, though, when Chelsea visit White Hart Lane for a crucial Premier League encounter.
While the result itself may not mean too much in terms of the title battle, a favourable outcome could generate a sense of belief in the Spurs camp that would push them a long way.
"I don't want to put that word in the mouth but we are aiming for very high things," he said.
"Chelsea is a massive game for us and a positive result can give us the confidence we need for the rest of the season.
"We want to get in the top four. We want to play Champions League. That is the main aim."