Tottenham Hotspur defender Eric Dier has explained the circumstances surrounding his withdrawal from England Under-21 duty, Sky
It was claimed Dier left the youth team because he didn’t want to play right-back, having been allowed by manager Gareth Southgate to skip games against France and Portugal. Dier has though denied that’s the case, explaining that he will play anywhere he is needed but does feel he is better served training rather than playing.
“I will never complain to a manager about what position I play as long as I am playing – I’d even play centre-forward if I was asked to,” he said. “I spoke to Gareth Southgate and we were in complete agreement that it was the right thing to do.
“We had an open conversation and I think he was happy that I could be so honest with him. If he wasn’t completely fine with this then I would never have asked because I would never want to put him in a difficult position,” Dier continued. “He has been fantastic with the whole situation and is really easy to talk to. I certainly would never want to give him or anyone else the wrong impression.
“It not a case that I don’t want to play for England, that couldn’t be further from the truth. It has been a hectic start to the season for me and I have been delighted with the number of games I’ve played so far.
“Obviously, I have just moved clubs and even though I represent England I have not lived here since I was really young so I am still adapting to my new environment.
“I just felt that this two-week period gives me the opportunity to work on parts of my game that I have had problems with over the past two months, personal elements I need to work on both physically and on the football pitch that I think will make me a better player for both club and country in the long-term.”
Dier came through the ranks at Sporting Lisbon and spent a short time on loan at Everton as a teenager before moving to Spurs on a permanent basis in the summer of 2014. He made barely 30 appearances for Sporting and has played 13 times for Tottenham, scoring twice.