When Tottenham first signed Eric Dier in the summer of 2014 for just a £4.25m outlay, it’s fair to say the hype surrounding the utility defender from Sporting CP was minimal.
Fast forward to the early stages of his third White Hart Lane campaign and the mood of celebration surrounding Dier’s freshly signed five-year contract extension demonstrates just how far past expectations the England regular has sailed.
Now a go-to man for his country as well as Spurs, it is full credit to Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino that the Argentine decided to convert Dier from a centre-half/right-back into a fully-fledged defensive midfielder.
As Tottenham went so close to ending a 52-year wait for England’s top prize, Dier was instrumental in that bid at the base of the midfield, as these stats from Opta show.
In terms of Tottenham performance in the the top-flight, since August 2015 the 22-year-old has ranked first in successful passes, second for interceptions and passes total and third for both tackles and blocks.
You only have to look at his manager’s beaming smile in the official re-signing pictures to see how much Dier is appreciated in north London.
Almost the first name on the Three Lions teamsheet now as well, it’s tricky to think of many other Premier League-era Spurs signings that the Lilywhites have extracted so much value from, in the last decade at least.
Hugo Lloris, Dele Ali and Kyle Waker are all notable acquisitions to have slid under the £10m marker, while at the other end of the spectrum (look away now) striker flop Roberto Soldado cost more than five-fold what Dier did.
This fan tweet also sums up the general mood on Twitter from Tottenham fans receiving the news of his contract extension.
— Zak Taylor (@zakt71) September 13, 2016
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.