Spain vs England: Rio Ferdinand leads criticism of Sam Allardyce's Eric Dier and Sergio Busquets comparison

Dier was impressive for England during their 3-2 win against Spain

Jack Watson
Tuesday 16 October 2018 12:37
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Press conference with England manager Gareth Southgate following their 3-2 Nations League win over Spain in Seville

As a nation famous for over-exaggerating talent and performances, one wild claim about Eric Dier has stood taller than the many comparisons that have come before.

Dier received praise by fans on social media for needlessly clattering into Sergio Ramos in the early stages of the game, but his all-round performance is what got people talking.

Sam Allardyce believes the Tottenham and England midfielder is better than Sergio Busquets, the winner of a World Cup, European Championship, three Champions Leagues, seven La Liga titles and many individual honours.

Dier's position in the England side has been heavily debated after a bit-part role in Gareth Southgate's system during England's World Cup campaign to the semi-final, but a strong performance against Spain has put him in contention to become a key player again, and Allardyce claimed he is on a similar level to the Barcelona midfielder.

"He's no better or worse than Eric Dier," he said when comparing the Tottenham midfielder to the Barcelona man on talkSPORT. "Busquets is a sitting midfielder that breaks it up, intercepts and passes it very simply and is intelligent - that's what he is.

"He's not much more than that, but gets a huge amount of praise for it, whereas Eric Dier does a similar job but sometimes gets a lot of criticism for it."

Not everyone agreed with the former England manager, and Rio Ferdinand said Allardyce should be embarrassed by his comments.

"Come on Big Sam!!" the former Manchester United defender and England captain said on Twitter. "Busquets has been the best holding midfielder for years and been an integral part in Barcelona and Spain's most successful periods.

"With all due respect, Eric Dier himself would be embarrassed with that comment!"

Dier's England teammate Raheem Sterling, who scored twice in the win, has praised the side for executing a complete team performance. “It was a brilliant team performance. We went at them from the beginning and we were clinical," he said.

“We came out the blocks firing. Great pressing, great passing, great goals. We knew the second half would be difficult but I thought we defended well, we soaked up the pressure and thankfully the ref blew the whistle at the end.

“We are going to enjoy this. Great performance, everyone dug deep, great goals from Raza and Rash and we deserved the three points."

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