Eric Dier says he is happy with the level of the majority of his performances for Tottenham Hotspur this season.
The 27-year-old has come under fire from the fans and the media for some of his displays during this campaign as Spurs have struggled with their defending and individual errors under Jose Mourinho.
The Tottenham boss said recently that the England international was suffering from a dip in confidence.
However, Dier believes he has been singled out by the critics when the team has struggled as a unit.
“Confidence-wise I don’t feel I have been in a bad place all season,” he said.
“I have gone through periods where I have had low confidence in the past so I know what it feels like. I haven’t felt that this season.
“Things have been taken out of….the most important thing is the reality and people’s perception versus reality can be different sometimes.
“I am talking about football in general. We have gone through a difficult moment, but it is important to keep things in context.
“I have been happy with my level for the majority of the season. There has been a dip in it which correlates with the team in general and the performances in general.
“I don’t think my confidence has been in a negative place where it has been in previous times.”
Mourinho has chopped and changed his defence this season although Dier has been a near ever-present until recent games against Brighton and West Brom.
Dier has felt first-hand how tough the Portuguese can be, having been taken off in Mourinho’s first Champions League tie at the club before half-time and having been removed at the break in another game.
“I always say I am a big boy. This is a ruthless profession,” he said. “I focus on doing the best I can, every time I get an opportunity, I always try to be the best version of myself in training, try to improve constantly and then in games, I know I can have good games and bad games but I am always relaxed because I always give everything I have.
“Everything in the outside does not affect me because I am confident in myself and confident that I always try to give the best of myself. Sometimes it goes well, sometimes it goes bad but my effort never changes.”
Spurs have struggled in recent weeks, dropping from the top of the league in December to ninth now, 23 points behind leaders Manchester City.
“It is no secret we are going through a difficult time,” said Dier. “We have got to, now is the time as a group we have got to all step up and work together to push through this moment, starting with the result [against Wolfsberger AC] and taking it into the weekend.
“We know the [last] result is nice, but it is just a small step. We need to find our consistency and level again and everyone is pushing in the same direction to achieve that.”