Eric Dier reveals Tottenham move came soon after the worst period in his career
By Harvey Byrne
Current Tottenham ace Eric Dier has revealed he was struggling in his final season’s with Sporting Lisbon before his move to north London.
The 23-year-old versatile player joined Spurs in the summer of 2014 for a fee of just £4million from the Portuguese giants.
The Cheltenham-born player broke through the Lisbon youth ranks after moving across to Portugal at the age of seven.
He made just 32 senior appearances for the Portuguese capital side with 26 of those outings coming in his final season at the club.
Now, in an open interview Dier has revealed his last season with Sporting Lisbon was “probably” the worst period of his senior career to date.
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“My hardest times came before I joined Tottenham. At 16, there was a period when I went on loan to Everton, and that was extremely tough for me,” told Dier to The Players Tribune.
“I moved on my own from Lisbon to Liverpool, and for the first six months I didn’t know what I was doing there — I felt completely lost. At that age, you doubt yourself. You give so much to football but you don’t know if it’s going to give anything back. It’s sort of a lottery.
“Then in my last season at Sporting Lisbon I barely played any games. In my first season with the senior team I had been involved a lot, but then a new manager came in and I didn’t get as much playing time. That was a horrible period — probably my worst, and I didn’t know what was going to happen.
“You know, playing in Portugal is a bit different than playing in England. Things can go south very quickly — the lower leagues in Portugal are not quite the same as they are in England. It was tough for me, but then in the summer a new manager came in, Marco Silva (who’s now the manager at Hull). He was fantastic for me in the month we were both there, and at that point I wasn’t thinking about anything other than trying to start for Sporting Lisbon.
“But then Tottenham came about when I was least expecting it. It was a chance that I had to take and thankfully it has worked out well. By the time I started my second season with the club, I thought I might be getting close to an international call-up, but you just don’t know for sure. It’s not like the manager is calling you up saying, ‘Well, you’re getting close, Eric.'”
Dier was current manager Mauricio Pochettino’s third senior signing at the club with only Ben Davies and Michel Vorm’s moves from Swansea coming before his.
The current England international was handed an instant chance in the Tottenham first team and started the club’s first five league matches of the 2014-15 season.
He has not looked back either, totalling a massive 124 appearances for the club and he will certainly be looking to feature more for a team which helped him develop into the player he currently is.
In other Tottenham news, Dimitar Berbatov has sent a heartfelt message to former teammate Robbie Keane.