England U20s defender Eric Dier looking forward to World Cup in Turkey
Eric Dier believes that the U20 World Cup in Turkey offers a big chance for the England squad.
The Sporting Lisbon defender is in Peter Taylor’s group for the competition, which started in Istanbul on Friday evening.
And the experience that England will get from facing the likes of Iraq, Chile and Egypt in their group games is something which Dier believes can only benefit their careers.
He said: “I think everyone in the squad feels that it’s a massive opportunity.
“Obviously the senior World Cup is a bit different but it’s a massive tournament all the same.
“It’s strange that neither Argentina or Brazil have qualified, when you think of World Cups you automatically think of them, they’re teams that you’d like to play against.
“But it just shows how strong the other teams are that have qualified.
“We’ve got Chile in our group and they are there on merit ahead of the other South American teams.”
With the rest of his England squad-mates all based with clubs on home soil, Dier comes into the tournament with that added experience of playing club football abroad.
And a number of his Sporting team-mates are in Turkey with the Portugal U20 squad, who kick-started the competition with a 3-2 win over Nigeria on Friday.
After they reached the U20 World Cup Final in Colombia 2011, Dier says there has been great excitement in Portugal surrounding this year’s tournament.
He added: “In England it doesn’t seem like people are so interested in it, but in Portugal it’s a massive thing – it’s a World Cup.
“Last time around the Portuguese team got to the Final, so everyone pays a lot of attention to it, and so obviously in my eyes it’s a massive tournament as well.”
The squad have now been in Turkey for ten days as they look to acclimatise to the warmer climate ahead of the competition.
There has been a strong togetherness and team spirit amongst the squad since they met up for the trip earlier in June.
And Dier reported for international duty with plenty of options to keep himself occupied during the trip.
“My mum always forced me to read when I was younger, so now I do like to have a couple of books, I enjoy that now to take my mind off things,” he revealed.
“It has to be paper books as well, I tried reading something on the iPad but I didn’t like it, you don’t get that same sense of achievement.
“At the moment I’m enjoying the Jack Reacher books, and I’d ordered Craig Bellamy’s autobiography for the trip but it didn’t arrive on time which was disappointing!
“I also like the obvious things like Playstation, iPods and all that, we’ll definitely be playing a bit of FIFA while we’re away.”
You can see Eric in FATV’s ‘Kit Chat’ below.