Phil Foden has spoken in glowing terms of Eric Dier’s ability to ping perfect long passes at will, with the two Premier League stars currently sharing a dressing room on international duty. 

Dier has not started any of England’s three group matches at the World Cup, with Gareth Southgate opting for the tried and tested partnership of Harry Maguire and John Stones at the back in all three matches so far.

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The Tottenham centre-back did get over 20 minutes under his belt in the 6-2 win over Iran after replacing Maguire in the 70th minute, and he could potentially be called up to start if Southgate decides to shift to a back three during the knockout stages.

However, based on Foden’s latest revelation, it appears like the 28-year-old has been impressing his teammates in training. 

A video of Foden and Jack Grealish doing keepie-uppies and pinging the ball to each other over 40-plus yards, went viral on social media last week.

When asked who else in the England squad could replicate a similar piece of skill, the Manchester City star named Dier and Jordan Henderson.

Foden said on The Lions’ Den: “Eric (Dier) has got the ping on lock, to be fair, he is good at that. I would say Eric and Hendo (Henderson). He is good at passing. They are good at that type of pass.”

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Eric Dier’s radar, with respect to his long passes, has been a bit off this season but we have seen him play perfectly-weighted longballs over the top of the opposition backline many times over the course of his Spurs career. 

The 28-year-old’s technical quality and his passing range are perhaps some of the main reasons why Conte sees him as a natural fit for the central sweeper role in a back three.

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