The now 25-year-old was once considered one of Spurs’ brightest prospects, marking his Premier League debut in September 2012 against QPR aged just 19.
His first senior appearance for the club also came just two months after being awarded a new four-year contract at White Hart Lane and he also made his senior England debut in November of the same year.
However, just a year and 29 senior Spurs appearances later Caulker departed for then Premier League side Cardiff in an £8million deal.
Caulker has since suffered relegation twice with both Cardiff and QPR and is now struggling with the London-based side in the Championship.
The defender has now spoken of his problems off the pitch in a very open interview and he also told that Levy once warned him of his behaviour during a post-season trip in the Bahamas, which Caulker saw as a challenge, but he has since looked back on the situation with much regret.
“He just said: ‘The way you act is unbelievable. You either sort yourself out or go but I can assure you, if you leave, you’ll be going down, not up,’” told Caulker when relaying the message from Levy as in the interview with the Guardian.
“I was young, stupid. I took it as a challenge, a chance to prove him wrong. I was so immature. So I went to Cardiff and, for six months, everything was amazing. I was captain, the manager, Malky Mackay, knew I had some issues but offered to be there for me. I felt wanted, so there was no gambling, no heavy binges but the second he was sacked, all the demons came back. That’s all it took. Even before we played the next game, I’d convinced myself nothing would be the same. That’s the kind of catastrophic thinking I’ve had to address.
“I ended up at QPR that summer, 2014, trying to hold it together, but the trigger there came in the second game when we were thrashed 4-0 at Tottenham. That feeling coming off the pitch at White Hart Lane, knowing we’d been embarrassed and that Levy was sitting up in the stand thinking: ‘I told you so’… There was no denying it any more. I’d made a big mistake leaving Spurs. I should have stayed and sorted myself out. I wanted the ground to swallow me up. It just pounded in my head: regret, regret, regret. From that moment I was gone, even if I never wanted to accept it, and everything just escalated. I’d go for days without sleeping. I don’t know how I survived it. That year was an absolute nightmare.”
Caulker never added to his one England cap since departing Tottenham, but he was offered a chance in the Premier League in the last campaign with loan moves to both Southampton and Liverpool.
He ended up playing just 12 times for both clubs and with one-year remaining on his contract at QPR he will be hoping to show what initially made him stand out in the Spurs youth ranks before dropping down further.