With Eric Dier starting to thrive in a midfield role for Tottenham and scoring in his side’s excellent 4-1 win over Manchester City at the weekend, it appears that the sky is the limit for this potential future England international.
Part of a young side at White Hart Lane, the 21-year-old has taken a different route to the Spurs first-team to the likes of team-mates Harry Kane, Nabil Bentaleb, Ryan Mason and Andros Townsend, who graduated from the team’s youth system.
Having been signed from Sporting Lisbon, it is clear to see the European tutelage in the rounded play that Dier has been displaying in 2015-16.
However, Spurs have a real reason to be very grateful to Everton in their enforcer’s development.
An 18-month loan stint at Goodison Park back in 2011 and 2012 heaped Dier become the player he is today, with Spurs reaping the benefits.
Winding the clock back to 2013, Dier commented on his time at the Merseyside club and admitted then that it was an essential facet of his development.
“I had become a bit spoiled or complacent at Sporting and I needed a kick up the backside, which is what Everton gave me,” The Daily Mail quoted the Spurs star as saying back then.
“Coaches like Alan Stubbs were quite hard on me but that helped a lot. It was the best thing that could have happened.
“It really hardened me up physically and mentally. The football was much faster, physical and more direct than here.”
The powers that be at Everton may well be looking at Dier thriving in the Spurs line-up and wonder why he isn’t part of Roberto Martinez’s current squad.