Eric Dier as good as Sergio Busquets, says Sam Allardyce
Sam Allardyce a guest on The Debate on Tuesday
Last Updated: 16/10/18 11:29pm
Sam Allardyce says Eric Dier is as good as Sergio Busquets following England’s win over Spain in the Nations League.
The Tottenham midfielder played a key role as Gareth Southgate's side upset their Spanish hosts in Seville following an impressive first-half showing, eventually winning 3-2.
Allardyce is of the opinion that Dier outshone Barcelona's Busquets, who has won seven La Liga titles and three Champions League crowns with his club, as well as the World Cup and European Championships with his country.
The former England and Everton boss believes the two play a similar game and insists that, if Busquets is to be lauded as a "genius", then Dier deserves more praise for the role he undertakes.
"The praise about Busquets must be stopped, it was never evident last night, he looked out of sorts," he told TalkSPORT. "He's no better or worse than Eric Dier, for me.
"Busquets is a sitting midfield player who breaks up play, intercepts, passes it very quickly and is intelligent. That's what he is. He's not much more than that, but he gets a lot of praise for it.
"Whereas Eric Dier does a similar job, but sometimes gets loads of criticism for it. He has got the capability of being that.
"Busquets has been a great player for Spain and Barcelona, don't get me wrong. He's a very effective player and is the first pick for every manager because he plays such a simple game. But we laud him as a genius, whereas our own we don't, we criticise. Eric Dier was far better than Busquets last night."
Allardyce also believes that Dier's early tackle on Sergio Ramos, which earned the 24-year-old a booking, helped to set the tone for the rest of the match.
"I loved it," he said. "A tackle like that can set the tone. As a manager, you look at who is going to get the fans on the edge of the seats. People will say that you can't think of something like that to do it, but when you watch a game of football and you see that level of commitment, you saw the cheer it brings from the fans.
"It says, 'we're going to get stuck in tonight, we're going to make an impression on Spain in all aspects of the game to win it'. That got a big cheer from the fans in the stadium and probably all the fans in England and certainly set the tone for the match."