Tottenham midfielder Eric Dier started the game against Red Star Belgrade in central defence, and did really well as Spurs won 4-0 in the Champions League.
The 25-year-old midfielder missed a lot of football last season. Around December, Dier felt unwell ahead of Tottenham’s Premier League clash against Burnley. He felt abdominal pain and needed an emergency surgery.
The England international has opened up on his illness, saying it was really serious and he badly struggled to keep himself fit.
According to reports from The Guardian, Dier was unavailable for five weeks after the operation, and even when he returned, he did not feel right about his health.
Ahead of Tottenham Hotspur’s Premier League clash against Sheffield United, Mauricio Pochettino was asked whether he missed Dier during his absence.
Pochettino said that he didn’t watch the interview and therefore he is not aware of what Dier has actually said.
The Argentine sounded very harsh but he spoke the brutal truth of how modern football operates. He said that the competition is so intense that it’s difficult for a team to miss any single player.
“The problem in the competition in the high level, you don’t have time to miss people, because you need to compete,” said Pochettino to Football London.
“It is like now with [Erik] Lamela, or [Jan] Vertonghen, how you sit in the chair and cry because you miss someone. You miss the person, the professional too, but the competition does not allow you to cry when you lose some players because of injury or other situations.
“You have to move on quick. It is a bit cruel, but you cannot think like this, you have to move on and find solutions to try to win the next game.
“If you ask me like an MP, not as a coach, of course you miss the person when they are not involved, or close to you. Everyone provides different energy and different relationships, but you have to split the professional and the personal side. You cannot be affected and you have to make decisions on the professional side.”
Pochettino will be glad to have Dier back in the side fully fit as the England midfielder can add dimension to his side. Spurs have made a poor start to the season, and find themselves 11th in the Premier League with only 13 points on board.