Tottenham Hotspur manager Mauricio Pochettino’s most-recent comments have led The Mirror to suggest that Eric Dier is no longer guaranteed a starting berth in the Spurs XI.

The former Sporting Lisbon enforcer is a central defender by trade, but the Argentine pulled off a masterstroke last season by playing him as a midfield anchor.

Dier was an essential member of the Tottenham side that finished third in the Premier League, with the England international recently being rewarded by his club with a new long-term contract.

However, Pochettino has switched to a 4-3-3 formation of sorts this season and as such has dropped the likes of Christian Eriksen and Dele Alli into deeper roles on occasions.

This has led to the need for only one dedicated holding midfielder, with summer signing Victor Wanyama impressing so far and also in contention for a starting berth.

With Mousa Dembele in the mix also, Pochettino’s comments suggest that Dier is no longer an automatic selection to play when fit and available.

“Maybe last season there was only him (Dier), [but] this season we want to improve our squad. It’s not a problem,” The Mirror quote the Spurs boss as saying.

“Now the players need to feel the competition. There is Wanyama in his position too. And don’t forget Harry Winks too, who is coming and pushing a lot from behind. You have to look forward and carry on working.”

Spurs are looking to make it five consecutive Premier League victories as they face West Brom at the Hawthorns on Saturday.



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