In an exclusive interview with Football FanCast, Gary Mabbutt has backed Eric Dier to come out the other side following his poor recent form at Tottenham.
Dier has started all but four of Spurs’ Premier League games, but is currently enduring a tricky spell at the heart of the Tottenham defence.
Having conceded a penalty against Chelsea last month, the England defender was then arguably at fault for West Ham’s opener recently, which led to him being dropped and replaced by Toby Alderweireld against Burnley on Sunday, again sitting out the win against Fulham.
Dier had played 90 minutes in each of Spurs’ Europa League ties against Austrian outfit Wolfsberger, so Jose Mourinho might have been resting him ahead of Thursday’s trip to Fulham.
The Tottenham boss doesn’t appear to know his best central defensive pair – with the likes of Davinson Sanchez, Joe Rodon and even Ben Davies all having played there this season.
But the 27-year-old, who reportedly earns £72,000-a-week, has played more Premier League minutes than any other defender this term, and Mabbutt told FFC that he still has faith in Dier. He said:
“I think Eric has shown what a player he can be for both Spurs and for England. And, again, it’s down to the manager to see who he feels is the best on that particular day or occasion for it.
“And then the other player will then come out like Eric did and say’ my confidence is fine’. If it’s not confidence, ‘I made a couple mistakes’. ‘Hey, let’s work on it, lets get back together, and a deal with it’. It’s all about finding a solution, making a plan.
“That’s what a manager has to do, he‘s got 26 players in this squad, every single player is different. Everyone needs different things to make them work. But that’s what a manager has to do, he’s got to get inside that player. Every single player, how to get the best out of them. That’s his role. That’s what his role as a manager is.”
Dier is going through one those periods where everything that can go wrong seems to be going wrong.
However, he’s shown previously for both club and country that he’s more than capable of performing at this level, so it’s just about eradicating those mistakes and getting back to his best.