Tottenham Hotspur’s Eric Dier pleased England bounce back from poor start at home to Slovakia to record fantastic win
- Credit: PA Wire/PA Images
The 23-year-old netted his third international goal before Marcus Rashford grabbed the winner for Gareth Southgate’s Three Lions
Eric Dier was delighted to see England regain their composure and come back to pick up a crucial three points by beating Slovakia 2-1 at home last night after a slow start.
The visitors took the lead after only three minutes of action at Wembley, as Marcus Rashford lost the ball deep inside his own half and Stanislav Lobotka fired in.
It was far from ideal for the Three Lions, but Gareth Southgate’s team hit back with Dier netting from a corner before Rashford capped a superb display with the winner.
England now need just one victory from their final two Group F games to book their spot at the 2018 World Cup in Russia.
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“It was really important and we needed to win to get us closer to the World Cup, as that’s the objective,” Dier told ITV after the victory.
“To do it the way we did was difficult because we started the game really poorly as a team for the first 10 to 20 minutes.
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“But to bounce back from 1-0 down and regain our composure and go on to win it was fantastic.”
As mentioned, England made a poor start under the arch with Lobotka scoring after just three minutes following a Rashford mistake.
It could have seen the teenager go into his shell, but he failed to let it deter him and went on to produce a fine performance.
Rashford helped England get back on level terms with a corner to the near post, which Dier smartly flicked into the net after 37 minutes.
And then just before the hour mark, the Manchester United attacker drilled in from around 20-yards and it turned out to be the winner.
Spurs midfielder Dier praised the contribution of the 19-year-old, although only after poking some fun at him.
“It wasn’t so good to begin with, but it got better,” laughed the Tottenham Hotspur ace when asked about Rashford’s performance.
“No, he did well and showed fantastic character to make a mistake for their goal, but then come back and score himself and the winner.
“It gets us even closer to the World Cup and hopefully he will shine there as well, so it is credit to him.”
Before Rashford’s winner, Dier netted his third international goal and it was important given the context of the match.
England fans were getting restless with Slovakia leading at Wembley, but the Spurs ace changed that in the 37th minute.
Rashford produced a decent set-piece delivery and Dier impressively flicked in at the near post to equalise.
He added: “We practised them in the morning actually out on the training pitch, so it was nice to score from one.”
Harry Kane and Dele Alli also performed well alongside Dier, as the Spurs trio helped their country claim an important victory at Wembley
Marcus Edwards was in action on Monday and came on in the 76th minute as England’s under-20s drew 0-0 in Switzerland.
The Tottenham youngster enjoyed Three Lions success last week when he scored a stunning free kick in a 3-0 win over the Netherlands, though did miss a penalty as well.
Josh Onomah also represented his country recently and played the full 90 minutes as England’s under-21s drew 1-1 with the Netherlands on Friday.
Kyle Walker-Peters wasn’t included in the squad, but both will look to feature this evening (Tuesday) when the young Lions host Latvia.