ERIC DIER has become the latest player to be linked with a move away from Tottenham Hotspur this summer.
Despite sitting second in the league, it hasn’t stopped the Englishman, as well as Harry Kane, Dele Alli, Kyle Walker and Danny Rose, being reported targeted by various Premier League clubs.
After joining Spurs in 2014 for just over £4million, Manchester United are apparently preparing a £40million bid for Dier this summer.
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Football Whispers have picked out five reasons why the England international will be calling Old Trafford home next season.
Manchester United offering anything above £40million for the 23-year-old will be music to Daniel Levy’s ears. Making a 1000% profit on any player is brilliant business.
Dier is arguably the third-best centre-back at the club, behind Jan Vertonghen and Toby Alderweireld, and then when you move up the pitch he is behind Victor Wanyama and Mousa Dembélé in the central midfield ranks.
If United are chasing the man with 17 international caps, it makes perfect sense, although Spurs will pretend to put up a fight to sell him on if an offer comes in.
Throughout his career as a manager, José Mourinho has favoured that destroyer type of midfielder in his ranks.
From Costinha at Porto and Claude Makelele at Chelsea. Thiago Motta and Esteban Cambiasso at Inter Milan and Sami Khedira at Real Madrid.
With Michael Carrick nearing the end of his Old Trafford career, Mourinho must find a replacement.
And in Dier he is looking at someone who is defensive-minded player, someone who can fill in at centre-back, but can also pick out passes from deep.
Mourinho favours that versatility and finds it ideal for someone in his position.
He makes fewer passes than Carrick, 57.9 to the 23-year-old’s 54.7, but only 10 of Dier’s games have come at the defensive midfield role.
Mourinho would enjoy the chance to shape and develop the England international into his vision.
Premier League Proven
Mourinho has been heavily linked with a move for Monaco’s Tiemoué Bakayoko in the summer, a clear sign that he’s in the market for a tough, combative central midfielder.
However, despite playing in the semi-finals of the Champions League and over 80 first team games in Ligue 1, he would still need time to settle in England’s top flight.
Dier would arrive at Old Trafford with proven Premier League pedigree.
The former Sporting Lisbon youth product has played 132 games for Spurs, at just 23, that’s a lot of experience in a league that doesn’t suit every player.
With Paul Pogba still settling into life back in Manchester, that stability could be very useful for the Portuguese boss.
Safe and steady pair of feet
Whether it’s in the centre of defence or playing higher up in the midfield, Dier, although not spectacular or as eye-catching as Vertonghen or Alderweireld, he’s a safe option and a player that likes to try and keep the game simple.
He says plenty of the ball, making 58.2 passes per 90, that’s just behind Vertonghen at 63.4 and Dembélé on 64.6, but ahead of Christian Eriksen on 56.3.
And he is fourth in terms of pass completion with 86.3 per cent of his passes finding their mark.
On average he attempts 1.9 tackles per 90, but with 0.6 fouls, he has a better success rate than Vertonghen and Moussa Sissoko.
There is an element of Makélélé to Dier’s game. Although only one outfield player completes more than his 5.5 long balls per 90 minutes, his average passing distance at 21 metres is shorter than the two Belgians centre-backs, suggesting that when the pressure is on, he makes sure to pick the easier option.
That’s something Carrick has done well during his career and although his average of 18 metres is lower again, that can be skewed with the style of football and playing more in the midfield.
The jury is out on whether the young Englishman is the like for like replacement that United fans would want when Carrick hangs up his boots, but he has a lot of the same qualities and is the type of player Mourinho has often built his midfield around.