Eric Dier a 19 year-old to watch

I brought to the attention, through my Facebook page [Tottenhem Memorabilia], around March time a young English player by the name of Eric Dier.

Eric Dier a youngster to watchI reported how he had grown up in Portugal and learnt his football there with Sporting, formerly known as Sporting Lisbon. The article was looking at training methods and the difference between his football upbringing and the upbringing of footballers in the UK.

During the summer the England U19 player was linked with Chelsea, Arsenal, Man Utd and ourselves among others. He has now graduated to the England U21 set up and played against Moldova recently.

Portuguese newspaper Record are reporting that he has been offered a new deal, his existing one runs out in 2016, but that he is unlikely to sign it unless it is improved.

He current contract was when he was coming through the ranks but he is now established in the first team, after breaking through last season and so is after an improved contract. They report that the Portuguese club want to insert a £38.02 million (€45m) release clause in his contract but can't pay him the wages to justify it, which does rather leave them in an awkward situation.

Apparently he has a £16.90 million (€20m) buyout clause at the moment which is either standard or an indication of how they see him developing. I would suggest the former but wishing to over double his value does suggest they consider him to be a valuable asset they can capitalise on at a later date.

That all sounds reasonable enough but with English clubs circling more money will be on the table over here so it's a decision he will have to take. He is unlikely to walk into a side a side though so if he did sign, would he stagnate, would he be loaned out to a Premier League or Championship club or would and should he be loaned back to Sporting.

It seems to me that when clubs eventually get their heads round Financial Fair Play and devise a strategy to deal with it, buying up all the young talent is going to be a major part. I can then see them being loaned out to learn their trade and get regular football to develop.

If this is the case it would be sensible to have tie ups with clubs in various leagues around Europe who we could loan players to, much like we have done with Swindon Town. It would require discussions with club management and agreements in place as to the type of football each team is going to play in the long term, in other words we would want footballing teams and not long ball merchants. Both Chelsea and ourselves have a tie-up with Royal Antwerp in Belgium, it would make sense to have one in Holland.

At the end of the day having bought young talent and developed it you would sell a lot of it on for a profit and keep the best for yourself, just the way the academy works at the moment.

Tim Sherwood is in charge of player development at Spurs and is highly though of by Daniel Levy. I wonder if Spurs already have this in mind and that Sherwood's role is going to become more international and arguably more important.

Franco Baldini has certainly been tasked with unearthing new young talent and our scouts are working towards that end, only recently we read stories of a young 18 year-old Frenchman at PSG being watched by our scouting team.

Dier is currently 19 and we were apparently prepared to pay £4.22 million (€5m) for him but Sporting wanted £6.34 million (€7.5m). He played 14 league games last season as a right-back, a centre-back and defensive midfielder before he fractured his rib in April. He scored 1 goal which came in only his second game, from right-back. He also appeared for England at the Under 20 World Cup playing 3 times, the Under 19 European Championships playing 3 times and 2 international friendlies at age level.

I pointed him out as one to keep an eye on, it seems teams are now doing just that.



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