Why Tottenham 22-year-old should be axed by Pochettino
COMMENT By Dominic Toner
Eric Dier should be dropped from the Tottenham side as he continues to struggle in defence.
The 22-year-old has been playing at centre-back in recent games as senior figure Toby Alderweireld remains sidelined through injury, but has looked very nervous in the role.
The England international was transformed as a defensive midfielder from 15 months ago and was a consistent performer in that position last season.
He has been asked by manager Mauricio Pochettino to cover in defence in recent weeks and he has be caught out of position on several occasions.
Alderweireld must return to the starting XI when he is fit again as the club’s form has dropped significantly without him.
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The Belgian international should resume his partnership alongside Jan Vertonghen when passed fit again and end Dier’s torrid spell in defence.
Spurs face Swansea in their next league game and Alderweireld is unlikely to return to that match, meaning Dier would be in contention to continue at centre-back.
Swansea showed their attacking exploits in a thrilling 5-4 victory against Crystal Palace on Saturday and Pochettino should not risk starting Dier.
Natural defender Kevin Wimmer would be a much more assured option and the Englishman should be allowed to compete for a midfield spot.
Dier has thrived in the defensive midfield role during the last year-and-a-bit, but is not guaranteed an automatic spot there anymore.
Summer signing Victor Wanyama has consolidated his position in the side and formed a strong partnership alongside powerhouse Mousa Dembele.
Dier needs to rediscover his top form if he is to be involved in the starting XI as Spurs try to bridge a seven-point gap to Premier League leaders Chelsea.
In other Tottenham news, Jermain Defoe has named the player that shocked him during training.