Davinson Sanchez did alright given what he was up against, but he is not remotely a right-back. Kyle Walker-Peters is injured, but even if he wasn’t, he’s barely played any Premier League football. Juan Foyth is injured, but even if he wasn’t, he’s not a right back. Eric Dier is injured, but even if he wasn’t, he’s got the turning circle of a woolly mammoth and is not a right back.
Dier is likeable. He’s positionally and tactically versatile. His attitude and teamwork are beyond reproach. He’s intelligent, has (sort of) spoken out against Brexit, and he’s one of very few English people players that speaks another language, in this case, Portuguese. These are all good reasons to want to have him around. But he needs less coddling.
Whether they end up winning anything this season or not, Pochettino and the club’s recruitment network are in for a difficult summer.
The next few years are going to be bristling with change. The old stadium is going, a new one is being built. Hopefully there won’t be as much coming and going with the playing staff, and certainly not the manager. There is a combination of rigidity and flare in this current squad which, if it continues to be nurtured and improved in key places, quite frankly means it could take on the world.