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Is Eric Dier Slowly Going Backwards For Spurs?

Is Eric Dier Slowly Going Backwards For Spurs?


In the past few years things have changed dramatically in North London, as we are now enjoying much better fortunes than our historic rivals down the road. With a quota of developing stars and a top-class manager, as well as a new stadium on the way, we certainly pushing to break into the 'elite'.

The impressive displays of Dele Alli and Harry Kane continue to catch the eye, with both now established as crucial players within the England ranks as well as with our club, but one name is starting to be forgotten after enjoying a similar rise previously.

Two years ago, at Euro 2016, Eric Dier was one of few positives for a disappointing tournament for the Three Lions and he entered the international competition on the back of a superb season for Spurs. Now, the 24-year-old is more of a squad player than a starter.

Dier may have 22 appearances across all competitions under his belt this season but the former Sporting Lisbon man has struggled to find stability, often playing in the centre of defence, and it`s clear this isn`t the right fit for him.

WhoScored`s average ratings show a poor 6.83 in a defender`s role, compared to 7.24 as a defensive midfielder. Dier certainly benefits from playing in holding midfield, just like he did in the 4-0 drubbing of Everton, but competition with Moussa Dembele and Victor Wanyama is having it`s toll.

As such, after being a starter for England at the European Championships, Dier may just be a member of the squad in the World Cup in Russia later this year. Versatile players like Dier are very useful in modern football but it`s often at the detriment of their own fortunes.

We can find evidence of this further down the road at Arsenal, where Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain never quite settled into a specific role and ended up having to leave the Gunners in the past summer. The same situation has occurred with Theo Walcott, who is also poised to leave.

Mauricio Pochettino won`t want that to happen with Dier but it`s certainly a risk. After his meteoric rise, Dier has gone from a first-team starter to a player fighting for opportunities and it`s therefore clear that he`s started to go backwards.

For that to change, Dier may have to take one more step back before launching forward. It`s clear that he`s better in defensive midfield than he is at centre-back, so a frank discussion with Pochettino needs to take place to make it clear that`s where he wants to be playing.

The immediate result would likely be a decrease in action, as he`d compete with Dembele and Wanyama for starting opportunities, but Dier would then be able to show the consistent form that had him turning heads previously.

Having said that, it is difficult for players in a holding role to grab the spotlight and the plaudits in a Spurs side that is so deadly going forward. The talk will almost always be about Kane, Alli or Son Heung-Min, with players like Dier in a less aesthetic role often underrated.
For Dier though, as long as he`s pleasing Pochettino and Gareth Southgate, plaudits shouldn`t matter at all and it may actually be beneficial to us as it would potentially reduce the links to his services- with Manchester United already tipped with a swoop in the previous years.

Keeping the Spurs squad intact is crucial for the club`s development, especially in a year when a stadium move is on the horizon, and Dier will play an integral role in this important transition.



Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

Writer:White Hart
Date:Wednesday January 17 2018
Time: 11:06AM

Comments

1
NO! Is my simple answer to the title. I'll now read on...
Hot Tottingham
17/01/2018 11:09:00
0
He hit the ground running, and he's Def gone backwards, gets England call up, hes. Utility player but master of none. Pity but why hasn't then been addressed off the pitch and try and put it right
123spurs
17/01/2018 11:16:00
1
Is a 6.83 rating so bad? There is some evidence to suggest that Dier performs better in midfield, but does that automatically imply that he's a poor defender? I think he is an above average PL CB, and a good PL midfielder. You can probably find better at either position, but you'd struggle to match the versatility and the options he gives to a manager. As I've said before, his ability to hold in midfield and drop into the back line when our full backs go forward is an integral part of the team tactics. We have seen some hiccups along the way, but that's not really unexpected for a young player. Alli has known dips in form too. Even Kane and his apparent inability to score in August. Nothing unusual and Dier remains an important player who stand a good chance of being even better in a few years.
BelgianSpur
17/01/2018 11:20:00
1
Ah, but we bought Eric as a CB that had had experience as a defensive midfielder also. When MP moved him a step forward, many supporters felt that he was not good enough for that role and his natural position as a CB was then in jeopardy. I think we are most lucky to have such a flexible player and I think he has excelled in bath robes given that he has often swapped position during the course of one match let alone from game to game. So yes, I agree he is a much needed and appreciated (by me) member of the Spurs squad.... As for England, I still see him as being a first choice come the WC.
Hot Tottingham
17/01/2018 11:22:00
1
BATH ROBES? I wouldn't know what he looks like in any kind of casual lounge wear! That was somehow corrected from BOTH ROLES! LOL
Hot Tottingham
17/01/2018 11:24:00
0
123, he's actually gone forward a little, then moved back, moved to the right, back to the centre and then forward again.
Hot Tottingham
17/01/2018 11:33:00
1
Sets up Harry's second goal for a simple tap in against Everton. Enough said.
Mareo202012 .
17/01/2018 11:50:00
0
Yer put yer right foot in, yer put yer right foot out .....
Geofspurs
17/01/2018 12:37:00
0
not sure I understand the article TBH. Dier does not have the enforcer or muscle power of Wanyama and he certainly doesn't have the ability to beat players as Dembele does so what are Eric Dier's strength's and why does he more times than most end up getting picked as CB and DM ?cos he's not a specialist player playing in a speacialist position! he is a utility player which is a rare bird cos he's actually quite good at it, except when he puts on an England shirt and suddenly has an embelism where a lateral pass across the 18 yard box or a back pass becomes a pass to the opposition and its all hands to the pump to recover the error! he's also not brilliant when facing players like DeBruyne or any of the higher technically skilled players in the PL he also has a habit of standing off and allowing a player to shoot from distance West Ham at Wembley being a case in point! For me Dier is good for 14 out of the 17 teams we play in the prem but defo no Cigar when its City United Chavs or Pool! Wanyama's better for those games!
OyVeh Maria
17/01/2018 13:37:00
0
England first. If Southgate has access to his best players then Dier plays every time. By that, I mean we would have Walker and Rose raiding down the wings and combo's of Alli, Wilshere, Barkley, Winks and Lallana running the show ahead of him and combos of Sterling, Rashford, Lindgard etc supporting Kane from the wider areas. There would always be a place for Dier as Henderson simply isn't a holding player with a brain and Livermore isn't up to it. Southgate could be brave and copy what Hodgson did and put Wilshere there but I doubt he will.

It's Dier's Spurs shirt that is more interesting. This season we've had barely any access to Wanyama, whilst Dembele has only completed back to back 90 mins once all season. Winks has carried injuries as well. Add to that the big injury to Toby, and Sanchez's 3 match suspension. Dier has once again been our ever dependable utility player and has started 22 out of 23 league games and 5 CL games.

I think we're now all desperate to see Toby and Rose back which gives Poch access to his best players. After that, it will be interesting to see what the team selections look like and whether Dier can continue his impressive record of starting games. I don't conform to the idea that he has gone backwards, but clearly playing with different midfield and defensive partners all of the time can take it's toll on his form for club and country. Don't be surprised to see him and Wanyama play together in some big games in the second half of the season. Anfield could be one.
muttley
17/01/2018 14:04:00
0
I'm fully in agreement with you, BelgianSpur. He'd definitely make it in most teams, defence or midfield and his versatility is a huge bonus. When Sanchez got sent off recently Dier slotted in and performed well. Most were surprised when Poch made him a DM, to which he excelled and became a big part of the England team. Just turning 24 he's not even peaked and probably won't for another 2 or 3 years, while not being able to play at specifically one position for continuity. Not too shabby for £4m
melloSPUR
17/01/2018 16:29:00
1
A lot of PL clubs wish they had a player like Eric Dier, he can play at DMF, CB or FB, all to international standard, he is Mr. Versatile. Utility players tend not to be stars, they don't get the chance to settle in one position long enough to do so. If Spurs decided to seek offers for Dier there would be no shortage of interested parties, and our squad would be very much the poorer if he left, and perhaps his efforts would be appreciated more when he was gone. There are players far more worthy of serious criticism than Dier, Sissoko would be a good starting point.
Frank
17/01/2018 16:35:00
0
124 Premierleague starts from a possible 137 gives him 3rd most starts behind Eriksen and Hugo isn't a bad feat, especially as the team has progressed massively in that time. As muttley points out: not only playing in one position, but with the numerous partnerships he has to form and work alongside it can't be easy for a young player to be as consistent as a seasoned player. I'm guessing very difficult.
melloSPUR
17/01/2018 16:42:00
1
I am so pleased that we have a squad that is beyond improvement, and after MP making an empty statement about "getting our transfer business done early" it is now more than halfway through the window without a peep from Spurs. From this I deduce that we don't need additional cover or options in MF for Eriksen or Ali, we don't need to inject extra pace into the squad which we lost with the sale of Walker, to give us some proper width, or an additional striker as cover or a selection option for Kane, who can actually run, unlike Lloriente. What we have got is a typical "Spurs window", with us staying in the shadows, waiting for a possible BOGOF or special offer (a la Van Der Vaart) on the 30th or 31st, same old same old. If you didn't know better (hopefully) you would think we as a club don't really want to go forward.
Frank
17/01/2018 16:54:00
0
Enic are more interested in building a multi purpose sporting arena rather than buy a player who might strengthen the squad. There used to be a football club there now it's more like a property development with enic building up for the big sell off after nearly two decades of mediocrity.
palmover
17/01/2018 17:21:00
0
Eric Dier is playing well. Please he’s our utility player who can fill 3positions. Let’s give the criticism a break. Seems like if a player isn’t wanted by Barca or RM something must be wrong with them. The lad is solid and young. Support him and help him to grow.
jvd
17/01/2018 22:59:00
0
Must admit, I'm somewhat bemused that to think we need to buy someone, given Lamela, Wanyama, Toby and Winks are getting back to fitness or recovering from injury. If we did buy someone to replace GKN I would hope it would be someone for our starting XI, although that would mean a £70m+ signing while Son, Eriksen or Alli would then be on the bench. Yannick Carrasco is the type of player I think we'd need: pace and can beat a player, although he'd have to hit the ground running. Frank and palmover, who would you like or expect to come in and how much would you expect them to cost? I'm not sure I agree about the board not wanting the club to move forward. Isn't being able to compete financially (part of) the reason we are building a new stadium?
melloSPUR
18/01/2018 02:18:00
0

....."2 decades of mediocrity" at Spurs? If it's been so mediocre in all that time at THFC, then imagine what it's been like being a WHU supporter. You'd probably have to stop watching football altogether. Or support another club?

Question: Name all the clubs in the PL that have not won a trophy in the past 20 years and who don't have a right-back called Walker or a crap manager named Pochettino?

If ENIC have no interest at all in buying any players that have ever improved the THFC Squad, then there must be some kind of magic going on these past few years.

Mediocre players, mediocre manager, mediocre owners... Mediocre supporters? Mediocre new stadium too, no doubt. With mediocre burgers, beer, tea, goalposts, pitch. And, all with a mediocre Dier, Kane, Alli, Eriksen, Jan, Toby, Son, Hugo, Rose, Dembele, Wanyama et al, all running around randomly with no real mission in their lives. Like drunken blue-arsed flies after s**t... Who could ever support a club like that?!

Hot Tottingham
18/01/2018 06:37:00
0
Sorry, seems I forgot to have an opinion about Eric Dier in all that!
Hot Tottingham
18/01/2018 06:42:00
0
Dier is a good utility player.. remember he can also play as RB... and was quite good as well. The recent injury list has moved him around a lot, and perhaps has affected his concentration causing some mental mix up as to what he has to do in certain positions. also a Man Utd manager "chats" did not help ! as he was confused for a while as to his future.. Hopefully poch can have a chat with him and our injury list reduces, his role as DMF will be more defined.
Block D Spurs
18/01/2018 09:00:00
0
The article kind of misses the point. Pochettino and Southgate don't ask which is Dier's best position. They play him wherever they most need him, that's how key he is.
jod
18/01/2018 09:04:00
0
melloSPUR - I do think there are players out there who could improve us and who would be within our means. We are a relatively appealing London-based club, with a good young core of players, playing in the CL. If we expect to strengthen our 11, that might be a tall order, but expecting to improve our squad is surely possible. Not every player is going to join us expecting to start. I look at Liverpool and the number of midfielders they have, they can't all play all the time, yet there doesn't seem to be too much unrest in their squad. Players like Wijnaldum, Can, Lallana, Sturridge etc are not guaranteed to start yet they seem happy to fight for their place. Most Spurs supporters seem to believe that any incoming player is going to demand to start, or sulk. I think we could strengthen our squad without unsettling it. As for Carrasco, I have seen him often in a Belgium shirt and I can't help but think he's a tad over rated. Belgium play a similar system to us (either a 4231 or a 343 depending on the players available for selection) and I've never seen Carrasco excel in either. He's a terrible fit for a system with 3 defenders. He does not like to defend, yet to fit him in the 11, he's played on the wing in a 343, often with disastrous results (think Son being picked on the wing against Chelsea in the FA Cup semi last season). In a 4231, he's a better fit playing in one of the attacking midfield positions, but my problem then is that I expect anyone playing in an attacking midfield role to chip in with goals and assists, and Carrasco just doesn't, really. In 78 league games for Atletico, he's scored 17 and delivered 8 assists. In 54 league games for Monaco, he scored 9 and gave 13 assists. He's very gifted technically, is pleasing on the eye because he's comfortable on the ball, but his end product isn't there. I personally don't rate him any higher than Lamela. Personally, if you're after a Belgian who can improve us (and obviously the Eden Hazards and De Bruynes of this world are beyond our means), I'd look at either Dries Mertens, who is a tad older but has been great everywhere he's been (Belgium, PSV, Napoli), or Eden's younger brother Thorgan Hazard, who reminds me of a young De Bruyne and is currently playing for Munchengladbach.
BelgianSpur
18/01/2018 09:26:00
0
i like Thorgan Hazard reminds me of his brother. Mellospurs if you believe that when the stadium is built Enic will invest in the squad than that's up to you. My take is that enic will invest in the real estate side and the team will still run on a zero net spend sell before you buy. Enic are an investment company they have no interest in spurs except to make money all successful teams are owned by people who love the club their involved with.
palmover
18/01/2018 09:47:00
0
No way!!
Ossie
18/01/2018 10:49:00
0
Eric is one of a kind for me. In isolation he wouldn't make it into my first choice CB or CDM picks to start and yet I'd still want to get him in the line-up somehow. Maybe one of the reasons he's ever present in the first team is his fitness and relative lack of injuries, but he's also a leader for me!
Parklaneyido
18/01/2018 13:07:00
0
Hot Tottingham, nobody is saying that our first choice 11 are mediocre, but the squad contains players who can be upgraded and replaced. We have no realistic cover or selection alternatives for Eriksen, Ali, Kane for instance. The modern game is a squad game that requires the ability to call on a 20 ish player squad to provide seamless cover in key positions to give selection options to allow for injury, fatigue, loss of form, or suspension, or to suit varying opposition. We as a club just seem to stop short of the level of investment necessary to become truly competitive for honours rather than a nearly club.
Frank
18/01/2018 13:55:00
0

Palmover used the word mediocre for our clubs general standing under ENIC. And, we are a football club with footballers in it. So, I expanded on his word and used it as a sarcastic put down to his (often) nonsensical, non meaning, throwaway posts....... Also, did I misread the article heading? Is it about Eric Dier or Dire ENIC?

Anyway, Frank, I disagree with you... I believe that we have a very good squad and this season in particular has shown it to be so, with the extent of our injury situation. I mean, relative to the likes of those above us in the PL that we really can't compete with financially. We just can't! This is the current reality.

Hot Tottingham
18/01/2018 14:36:00
0

I'm not saying that we can't be improved. Of course we can. Is there a squad at any club, anywhere, that cannot be improved? I'm arguing that our squad has been improved. Not than it can't be. I think this is blatantly obvious. We have year on year bought players in that have proven to be top quality. We have sold many players that were not considered good enough and replaced them with better ones. Surely I haven't just imagined this.

The only position that we have struggled to improve upon, these past 3-4 seasons is at centre forward. But we have Harry Kane and he was indeed a vast improvement on almost every other forward we have had in recent years. (ENIC years)? Can we improve on him right now?

Hot Tottingham
19/01/2018 05:33:00
0
Dier, is entitled to have an off period, he's been ever consistent in MF, his preferred role ... due to injuries he's at the back ... he needs time in MF, to continue the good work. He's not gone back wards at all, our standard have risen ...we never could of got a player of his caliber 10 years ago, let's not forget the caske, clemence etc
E17YID
19/01/2018 07:06:00
0
CCV has gone on loan to Ipswich Town....
Hot Tottingham
19/01/2018 14:21:00
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