NEW assistant head coach Matt Wells revealed that, despite being a few years older, he played alongside Cherries stalwart Adam Smith in Tottenham’s youth ranks.

The right-hand man to Scott Parker was in Spurs’ academy for 11 years, after joining aged nine, before injuries hampered him and forced an early end to his playing days.

In that time, defensive midfielder Wells used the experience to absorb what was around him and quickly turned his enthusiasm into a career via coaching.

But reminiscing about his time in north London, Wells recalls an unlikely name as his cohort’s most successful graduate, and how he actually had a chance meeting with Smith – even ending up on the same team as the Cherries full-back.

The 32-year-old told the official club podcast: “I did actually (play alongside him), Adam was a bit younger than me but somehow we ended up playing a couple of games together.

“That probably speaks a bit more about his ability than mine as he was a few years younger, so I’m not sure how many age groups he was playing up or I was playing down.

“A lot of talented players came through but the period I was there probably wasn’t the best.”

Wells joked: “Probably the most successful graduate was Mark Wright, who went on to be in The Only Way is Essex. I think he was the biggest success.”

Smith is not the only Cherries link that Wells had prior to joining the club, either.

Although Wells’ grandad Cliff Jones is one of Spurs’ all-time top goalscorers, his great uncle Bryn actually played 131 times for Cherries in the late 50s and 60s.

Despite Bryn passing when Wells was very young, he has heard all about him.

He added: “I don’t think I ever met Bryn but through my grandad Cliff and my family I have heard a lot of stories about him.

“Everywhere I go at the moment there seems to be links, obviously my grandad at Tottenham and I moved to Fulham, which is the exact move he made. It’s definitely a bit of a footballing family.”