By Tony Hughes

Tony Cascarino has claimed Eric Dier will struggle to be a regular starter for Tottenham this season.

Dier was one of Mauricio Pochettino’s most trusted lieutenants last term after being successfully converted into a deep-lying midfielder by the Argentine coach.

But Pochettino has switched to a 4-1-4-1 system in recent weeks with summer signing Victor Wanyama preferred to Dier in the sole holding position in front of the back four.

Pochettino has offered Dier reassurances about his future and believes the 22-year-old should be allowed to develop in a number of positions.

But Cascarino fears the England international is at risk of becoming a utility player because Wanyama is a level above the Englishman.

“It’s hard to see how Eric Dier will get back into the Tottenham team when everyone is fit,” Cascarino told the Times, as quoted by the Evening Standard.

“He established himself in a defensive midfielder position last season but Victor Wanyama looks a much better player.

“Dier replaced Toby Alderweireld last night and filling in for absentees might become is main role this season.”

Dier performed admirably in his old position of defence as Spurs claimed a crucial point against Bayer Leverkusen in Tuesday’s 0-0 draw in Germany.

With Alderweireld absent with a knee injury, Dier partnered Jan Vertonghen at the back.

In other Tottenham team news, a hint has been dropped that Spurs are closing to clinch a deal for a 29-year-old.