Chris Sutton has told The Monday Night Club that Antonio Conte has transformed Eric Dier into a world-beater, while he also commented on a very remarkable statistic also involving Tottenham Hotspur teammates Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg and Oliver Skipp, writes the TBR.
Dier has had an interesting time over the last few years. It had appeared that the England international may be one player who would fall well short of what appeared to be his full potential.
The 28-year-old had really struggled under a number of managers and fell out of Gareth Southgate’s plans at international level. However, Conte’s arrival appeared to spark a change in fortunes for Dier at Tottenham.
Dier had been outstanding throughout the early stages of the Italian’s tenure. And his importance became apparent in the last few games, with the centre-back ruled out due to injury.
Dier has missed Tottenham’s last three Premier League games. And without him, Spurs have conceded seven goals, including five in the last seven days.
They were calamitous without him against Wolves on Sunday. And it really does appear that he is integral to the progress Conte is trying to make this season.
Incredibly, Tottenham have not conceded a single goal under Conte when Dier, Hojbjerg and Skipp have all been on the pitch at the same time.
And Sutton lauded the Spurs boss for the impact he has had on Dier and others.
“Dier is looking like a world-beater, which he isn’t. But it’s fascinating to see that stat [that they haven’t conceded when Dier, Hojbjerg and Skipp are in the team],” he told The Monday Night Club.
“You look at the two players, Skipp and Hojbjerg, two more aggressive and disciplined players and you can understand why the team aren’t so effective defensively when they aren’t playing.”
Throughout Conte’s managerial career, he has managed to spring a surprise with some of the players he has helped reach another level.
Dier has proved in the past that he can be world-class. However, his career seemed to stagnate for several years. So some Tottenham fans may have wondered what his future would hold following Conte’s appointment.
But something appears to have clicked. And the early signs certainly suggest that Dier could well be the player who benefits the most individually from Conte coming in at Tottenham.