Tottenham suffered a major dent to their hopes of finishing in the top four in the Premier League this season after falling to a 3-1 defeat to Leeds United at Elland Road on Saturday afternoon.
Ryan Mason’s side came into the game off the back of a morale-boosting 4-0 thrashing of Sheffield United last time out, with Gareth Bale netting a hat-trick in the process.
However, the Lilywhites looked completely toothless up in Yorkshire yesterday, managing just three shots on target in the entire 90 minutes and having Hugo Lloris to thank for saving their blushes with a number of top-class saves.
While Sergio Reguilon faced a lot of criticism for his performance, it was arguably Eric Dier who was Spurs’ worst-performing player on the day. The England international looked all at sea with the pace and movement of Leeds’ attack and was caught out by a near-post cross for Patrick Bamford’s goal.
That prompted Spurs journalist Alasdair Gold to remark on Twitter that Dier had fallen “asleep“, and his lack of understanding for when to track runners must have been deeply frustrating for Mason to watch from the technical area.
As per Sofascore, the 27-year-old won just two tackles in the entire game, with even Giovani Lo Celso winning more, and he triumphed in only four of his nine total duels.
It wasn’t just defensively that he struggled however, with the centre-back unable to keep calm when in possession, conceding the ball on 12 separate occasions and being hurried into going long by Leeds’ constant pressing.
Writing in his post-match player ratings for Football.London, Gold gave him a lowly three, saying: “A tough afternoon for the player up against Bamford and was at fault for his goal as he was caught watching the ball as the Leeds ace nipped ahead of him to net. Not a good game at all from the England international in front of Gareth Southgate.”
While Reguilon may shoulder a lot of the blame for his role in a couple of Leeds’ goals, Dier’s overall performance was arguably even worse. Here was an experienced head completely letting his rookie manager down.
Dier was a complete liability with his positioning at the back, and it must raise even more questions as to why Joe Rodon doesn’t start regularly for Spurs.