An explanation has emerged this evening for why Spurs midfielder Eric Dier was absent from the start for his side’s matchup with Liverpool earlier today.
The two sides went head to head in a Premier League fixture at Wembley, with both on markedly differing form over the last six weeks.
Mauricio Pochettino’s Tottenham had managed 7 wins from their last 9 games across all competitions, and earned a hugely impressive draw away to European champions Real Madrid in the Champions League on Tuesday night.
Liverpool, on the other hand, had managed just 2 victories from their last 10 in all competitions, though they did put 7 past a hapless Maribor in the Champions League midweek.
And it didn’t take long for this form to translate to the pitch this evening, as an early strike from Harry Kane after just 4 minutes gave the home side the lead, following a calamitous mix-up in the Liverpool back four.
Son Heung-min made it 2-0 eight minutes later, before Mohamed Salah restored hope to fans of the Reds with his 9th goal of the season after 24 minutes.
But a Dele Alli strike from the edge of the box on the stroke of half-time sucked the air out of Jurgen Klopp’s side, leading to a flat second-half performance which culminated in yet another Harry Kane goal and a 4-1 full-time result.
Under the weather
On a superb day for Spurs, one question remained for many of the club’s fans.
Though it did not impact on the result, many took to social media to query why Eric Dier had not been included in their midfield from the start.
Dier was an 81st minute replacement for Christian Eriksen, with it since being confirmed that the English midfielder was suffering from the flu, a likely explanation for his absence from Mauricio Pochettino’s starting XI.