Dier: Very important Spurs keep team intact

Eric Dier has stressed the importance of Tottenham holding on to their best players this summer amid ongoing speculation around Harry Kane.

Press Association Sport understands Spurs are determined to keep their prize assets, particularly Kane, with the club prepared to reject even a world record bid for their star striker.

Real Madrid have been credited with a strong interest in Kane and the most likely scenario in which he could be sold is if the player indicated he wanted to move.

But there is no suggestion yet that will be the case, as Tottenham look forward to their new 61,000-seater stadium opening next season.

“It is very important the team stays together,” Dier said.

“We have got a very good team, a very good squad. Every team in the world wants to keep their best players and stay together.”

Spurs are hopeful of striking a deal this month for Bordeaux winger Malcom but talks are at an early stage and the 20-year-old would be more likely to arrive in the summer.

Creativity was certainly lacking on Sunday as Mauricio Pochettino’s side were held to a 1-1 draw by struggling Southampton, with Kane cancelling out an early own goal from Davinson Sanchez.

Hugo Lloris and Christian Eriksen were both absent through illness and Pochettino admitted afterwards others in his line-up at St Mary’s had also been under the weather.

Lloris was back at Hotspur Way on Monday and expected to return to training this week, although Michel Vorm is likely to continue in goal anyway against Newport in the FA Cup this weekend.

It was Eriksen’s touch and eye for a pass that were particularly missed on the south coast.

Spurs midfielder Christian Eriksen
Christian Eriksen’s influence was missed on Sunday (Steven Paston/PA)

“Christian is a fantastic player. We have a great squad but obviously there are not many players like Christian,” Dier said.

“Christian plays an important role in the team. He is one of the links between phases of play and is key in that regard. He can create chances and score goals.”

While Tottenham will slip five points behind fourth-placed Liverpool if the Reds beat Swansea on Monday, Southampton’s battling display offered hope for their under-pressure manager Mauricio Pellegrino.

Southampton boss Mauricio Pellegrino
Southampton boss Mauricio Pellegrino has found himself under pressure (Adam Davy/Empics)

Saints stay 18th ahead of Saturday’s FA Cup game at home to Watford, with crunch matches against Brighton and West Brom to follow in the league.

“We have to look at this as a good point,” defender Ryan Bertrand told the official club website.

“If you analyse the fixtures, we have 10 or so games that are must-wins and then others we can win but they’re not necessarily the points we’re expected to take. We’ve got more than enough.”

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