Mbulelo Mabizela: Tottenham departure down to my own mistakes

South Africa defender Mbulelo Mabizela admits his off-field problems wrecked his dream move to Tottenham.

South Africa defender Mbulelo Mabizela admits his off-field problems wrecked his dream move to Tottenham.

But Mabizela, now with England's friendly opponents Platinum Stars, is still determined to show against England - including ex-Spurs team mates Ledley King and Jermain Defoe - that he can play at the top level even if it means giving Fabio Capello's men an uncomfortable ride today.

Mabizela, who has won 44 caps for South Africa and is known as Old John, told the Mirror: "When I look back, I've made a lot of mistakes in my life. I made some mistakes, mistakes in my personal life, things I'd rather not elaborate upon, as a result of me leaving Spurs.

"Those mistakes happened and that was the reason I had to leave Spurs. I left and I came back to South Africa - I went for help, I got help, I'm still being helped. I wouldn't say I'm OK now, but I feel I'm going forward now.

"I can say that, even though it's just an open public session, everyone in my team is looking forward to the game with England. I had a good start at Spurs, but it was too short and it's something that I will always look back upon with regret.

"Those days are gone, though. You can't dwell on them. I have to carry on with my life and my career. I played with Ledley, Defoe, some of the guys that I'll be up against here."