Eric Dier claims Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta is “the most exciting young manager in Europe”.
Spurs meet Arsenal in the north London derby on Sunday, with Dier’s side top of the table and Arsenal eight points off their pace.
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But Dier – slightly bizarrely given the rivalry – has lavished praise on Arteta and insists Arsenal’s woes in the Premier League won’t make the clash any easier.
“They’re going through a bit of a difficult period but in these games it doesn’t really matter, who is where in the table is irrelevant,” Dier told Sky Sports.
“We know how much of a difficult game it’s going to be, how much the game means for us as players and for the fanbase and the club. The position in the table is irrelevant and I think it’s very early on in the season for both teams.
“It’s going to be a great game either way and one we’re really looking forward to.”
Asked whether Arsenal’s results are likely to improve, Dier replied: “Yeah, of course.
“They’ve got a lot of quality in their team and I think they’ve got a very exciting young manager.
“I think he’s maybe the most – personally, obviously I’m not on the inside! – but from what I see, the most exciting young manager in Europe, for sure.
“I like his way and the way in which he seems to be as a manager so I think they’re in good hands in that sense. We know they have a lot of quality in their squad and we’ll be very aware of that on Sunday.”