Eric Dier in the Defensive Midfield Role?

Image: SpursWeb

First thing’s first, the match against the MLS All-Stars was a match against the MLS All-Stars and there was no true insight on what worked and what didn’t. However, one idea that was thought provoking was playing Eric Dier in the Defensive Midfield role alongside Nabil Bentaleb. If I recall, it was done once last season and I thought nothing of it, but have to admit; I was unaware that Eric Dier would seem as comfortable as he was in his time on the pitch in Colorado. He seemed very comfortable both on and off the ball as well as very defensively sound. At times last season, Dier seemed a bit shaky at the back, which can most likely be attributed to his inexperience at the top level. However, having him in the middle of the park with Bentaleb could see his defensive mistakes non-existent and become more frequently featured in that role especially if James McCarthy isn’t purchased.

Having Dier in that role could also free up Nabil Bentaleb to become even more of a ball distributer and see a slightly more attacking role in the side. Since Dier is a natural defender, he will most likely see little to no action on the attack in his Defensive Midfield role. The more impact that Bentaleb can have on the attacking front will only make things better for Spurs going forward.

Of course there is also Ryan Mason who is the preferred choice to play in the middle of the park next to Bentaleb. However, as we have seen in the current squad, position battles seem to bring out the best in some players. The idea of having a natural defender to support the back four could help Spurs who without a doubt struggled keeping the ball out of the net last season. For players like Kyle Walker and Kieran Trippier who are more attack minded Right-Backs. They would have more confidence getting up the pitch knowing there is a good defender behind them if they get caught out.

Eric Dier with his good performance has also made himself a more valuable member of the squad. He now is a valid choice for three positions on the pitch: Right-Back, Center-Back, and Defensive midfielder. If anyone were to get injured in those positions, Pochettino would have no problem putting Dier in as a replacement. Of course, as stated previously, tonight was the first time we saw Eric Dier in the Defensive Midfield role. In the final two friendlies of the preseason against Real Madrid and Bayern Munich/AC Milan, if Pochettino plays Dier in the same position, perhaps it will be the true tell whether or not he will be considered to play the Defensive Midfield role. Either way, Eric Dier looked a natural Defensive Midfielder in the match against the MLS All-Stars.

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    • I like Mason, and I wonder why he didn't make the trip – It's fishy, to say the least, that he missed the trip to the US because of misplacing his passport!

      As far as Delli is concerned, he looks fantastic!

  1. Mason one of those players like bently likes to look at himself in the mirror make sure his hair looks good .. We need good footballers not good looking footballers..

  2. Since I'm going to the University of Pennsylvania and know a great deal about Spurs, I can attest that you have written a good article here. Eric Dier was a solid midfielder and will continue to be for Tottenham. Let's just hope that Pochettino continues to put him in. COYS.

  3. if we rely on eric dier as the holding midfield player through the premiership campaign we can kiss goodbye to a top 6 finish. We have been after a quality player in that position for 18 months and for good reason.
    I mean good guy, wants to do his best, but he simple isn't good enough.

    Man Utd- Schnederlin & Sweinsteger)
    Arsenal- Cock-er-lan(they have IMPROVED AS HE HAS MATURED)
    Man City- Toure- Ferdandinho- and others
    Tottenham -……………

    COME ON….

    Kramer should be brought in, pay the money and get him. Young, Physical, can pass with both feet, presence, and sets the tempo of a game.

    • For the record, coquelin struggled and played similar positions as Dier at arsenal before this season so you never know

  4. if we rely on eric dier as the holding midfield player through the premiership campaign we can kiss goodbye to a top 6 finish. We have been after a quality player in that position for 18 months and for good reason.

  5. Completely disagree. Thought Dier looked like a cb playing dm and that’s not a good thing. I think he will be far too cumbersome to play I’m midfield and better level players rings around him. Very rarely do cb’s make good long term dm’s .I might be wrong and he may grow into the role. For now I would rather Mason if we don’t sign another dm and let Dier concentrate on being the player he was bought in to be.

  6. IMO Poc' really played a more than a as Dier spent most of his time as an advanced CD than as a DMC. Have a look at the match again and see that Bentaleb was roughly in line with the fullbacks as often as not with Dier behind him and the two CD just behind and to the side of him: that is an advanced CD not a DMC


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