Garth Crooks raves about Eric Dier's performance after Pochettino's 'inspired move'

Tottenham Hotspur Logo

Garth Crooks has hailed Tottenham star Eric Dier following his display against Sunderland.

Pundit Garth Crooks has told BBC Sport that Mauricio Pochettino's decision to move Tottenham defender Eric Dier into midfield has been 'inspired'.

Spurs claimed their first win of the season on Sunday, defeating Sunderland 1-0 at the Stadium of Light thanks to Ryan Mason's well-worked goal late in the game.

Mason impressed during the victory, but former Tottenham striker Crooks has picked out his midfield partner Eric Dier for praise.

Dier, 21, spent last season playing at either right back or centre back, but manager Pochettino has chosen to push him further forward into a holding midfield role this season.

The England Under-21 international continues to earn rave reviews for his displays in front of the back four, and Crooks has now jumped on that particular bandwagon by saluting Dier's performance against Sunderland in his Team of the Week column on BBC Sport.

"Playing in front of the back four as a midfield holding player for Tottenham, Eric Dier was as enthusiastic as it gets,"said Crooks. "I have, after all, seen him play at full-back and centre-back and cope admirably but I never thought he had the ability to play consistently in a more forward position where one's influence on the game is often more pronounced."

"His impact for Spurs against Sunderland was impressive and his change is proving to be an inspired move by manager Mauricio Pochettino," he added.

After selling Benjamin Stambouli, Etienne Capoue and Paulinho over the summer, many Spurs fans believed that Pochettino should have been looking to sign a new holding midfielder, but such a player failed to arrive at White Hart Lane.

Instead, Pochettino has set about converting Dier into a holding midfielder - and so far, that experiment is certainly paying dividends for Spurs.

Register for TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch