Tottenham Hotspur Eric Dier has been notably coy in response to rumours suggesting he wanted a move to Manchester United this summer.
Reports suggested over the transfer window that the Englishman, an important target for Mourinho, was keen on moving to Old Trafford, but Spurs proved reluctant to sell any further big names after letting Kyle Walker leave for Manchester City.
The latter appeared to confirm Dier’s desire to move to Man United during a recent live stream filmed by Dele Alli ahead of the England squad’s journey to Malta.
But Dier, speaking soon after the 4-0 win in Valetta, was reluctant to shed too much light on his intentions over the summer.
“I think it’s best if footballers worry about playing football,” he said. “I take the philosophy that if I worry about the football everything else will take care of itself.”
The 23-year-old’s refusal to address the elephant in the room speaks volumes. Mourinho had earmarked him as somebody capable of adding balance to his midfield but any hopes of a move elsewhere were dashed after Spurs let Walker join Man City.
But the Portuguese should consider Daniel Levy’s unyielding stance on Dier as a blessing in disguise. He has, in Nemanja Matic, signed a midfielder with twice the ability for almost half the price he would have needed to secure the Spurs man.