Date: 6th February 2018 at 4:06pm
Written by:

Dele Alli fast approaching a crossroads

Those of you that read the words of Harry Kane in the Players Tribune, following his landmark 100th Premier League goal, will have been amazed at the dedication that the 24-year old has shown to ensure that he can make the most of his talents he has at his disposal. The model pro in every sense of the word – if only Dele Alli displayed the same level of application.

Alli, in truth possesses far more natural gifts that Kane ever had but he is in danger of damaging of what could be one of the most promising of football careers as he continues to show a severe lack of professionalism both on and off the pitch. As Tottenham left Anfield after arguably our best away performance of the season, Dele, fresh from another game being booked for simulation this time – found himself all over social media due to his off-pitch antics. If we couple this with dangerous tackles he commits on a regular basis he is slowing pressing a self-destruct button that will ensure he will never fulfil his undoubted potential.

There is no doubting that Alli can achieve anything he wants from the game; however, it does worry me that he is being influenced by those off the pitch that will ultimately be his downfall if he doesn`t make some notable changes in his life. We no longer see that fresh-faced hungry footballer from MK Dons and instead see a man who is falling into all the trappings of fame and all that goes with it. I worry that if a strict disciplinarian like Pochettino can`t get into his head, then what hope is there for any other manager in the future.

Dele Alli is facing a genuine crossroads in his career at this moment in time and he needs to make his mind up of what he wants from the game. Petulant tackles, blatant diving and enjoying life to excess off the pitch isn`t contusive to being one of the most talented footballers in world football – something he has the ability to become.

Harry Kane closed his column by claiming that his dream when he closes his eyes is to lift a Premier League title at Tottenham`s new ground?I do wonder where is Alli`s head is at if he was asked that very question!


34 Replies to “Crossroads Fast Approaching For Dele Alli?”

  • Dele looks to be enjoying his football to me and has played very well in recent matches… And, wasn’t Harry also accused of diving himself? Hey, Harry is a good lad and works hard. Dele has a bit of the wild boy in him but he also obviously works hard too…… I see no problem just now. … As for the so called sex-tape, well that looks as phoney as seeing footage of Sir Alex Ferguson getting on down with Mourinho whilst both are to be seen wearing pairs of Spurs branded bras n knickers!

  • The major problem Delle has is that he is so talented. Often right through sport, music, art, etc you’ll find that the precociously talented are generally the ones who urn very bright for a shockingly short time then either implode or just disappear. Mainly thios happens because they rely on their gifts to get them through because they don’t have to work to do it, whereas someone like kane has to put the shifts in with the practice. Then there comes the point where the hard working less talented one gets to the same level. Mr talent still doesn’t need to work to keep pace, but because mr work is working hard, he surpasses mr talen. mr talent doesn’t have the work ethic he should have, and needs to be able to get on, whereas mr work on the other hand has the work ethic, so he goes on to accomplish great things whilst mr talent so often falls by the wayside. BUT those who ave the talent ANG put in the work go on to do SPECIAL things. Selle needs to take a step back, look at imself and start to put the work in. If he does he WILL go on to great and special things, if not he will just be another good player. Maybe the situation with his parents has something to do with the way he acts and reacts on the pitch, because he seems to be carrying a lot of anger and aggression on there with him. It may be an idea if he were to make peace with them cz that’s where it could be stemming from. I really hope he does pull it off and calms down, stops this stupid diving stuff and becomes the player he shows he could become. If he doesn’t stop diving refs won’t give him a pen because they’ll be too worried that he has conned them again, so by diving he is actually putting any legitimate penalty shout for Spurs at risk, which means that we could lose a final placing on goal difference due to penalties not given because he dives so much. That could mean the difference between 4th and 5th, and we all know what that would mean. Bl**dy thursday night games again.

  • Dele hasn’t been as instinctive as the previous seasons, however, all players have seasons were they don’t excel but play ok. Dele will have a big season at the new lane and will develop into a world class player.

  • Whilst I would agree with much of what you say re Deli, I think it somewhat perverse to directly compare his character and behaviour with Harry Kane. Kane is somewhat of a one off, a pro footballer who lives in the same universe as the rest of us, doesn’t drive around in a flash car, doesn’t sport a different nubile young female on his arm every five minutes, is reasonably coherent and articulate, is in a stable personal relationship, level headed with his feet firmly on the ground, in short the exception that proves the rule for a pro footballer. The nearest parallel to him recently is probably Scotty Parker. Deli on the other hand is younger, has had a troubled upbringing, probably suffering a lack of stable parental guidance, was very fortunate that he has had an easier route to the top, not having had to work hard and rough it through umpteen loan spells at lower league clubs “learning his trade”, due to his exceptional natural talent and ability. From a personal point of view, he is a good looking unattached young man, who likes his nightlife and his ability to pull females, who needs some firm guidance in conducting himself both on and off the pitch. This will largely fall onto the shoulders of Pochettino in the absence of a strong, forceful, “captain type” personality at the club these days, I can only imagine the “guidance” that the likes of Dave Mackay might have imparted on the young man. The only good thing in a perverse kind of way, is that if he fails to reach his truly full potential, we might have him to enjoy longer at Spurs, as if he did fully blossom I’m afraid he would be over the hills and far away very quickly, given his transfer value, and especially with his newly appointed agent team. I think he will still mature into an outstanding PL MFer as he gains age and experience, and with firm guidance and discipline will be an asset to us in the future. We he can’t afford to do is to become a marked man with referees, so that they take disproportionate action against him compared to other players, as this happens.

  • Dele is not a major problem for Spurs because he still provides great assists for our other forwards.He’s not scoring as much because Kane & Son are doing so well up front.Our big problem is starting slowly & conceding soft goals .Good defending would have stopped both of Salah’s goals.Yes ,the guy can dribble in tight areas,but there is no need to stand by like rabbits caught in the headlights watching the bloke dance around without a single tackle going in.Pathetic defending!

  • Nice post Frank, right on the money. Really trust that Poch will have a serious talk with him. Very hard to dictate to millionaire youth today but I really hope he will listen. I actually took a good feeling from his gesture to Moss on Sunday after his yellow card. He actually seemed to apologize to Moss as he passed him getting back to his position for the goal kick. If you get a chance to see the game again, look for it, just a pat on Moss as he passed him but it was clear he was saying, ?you?re right, sorry about that?. Good luck to him and may he continue to grow in maturity.

  • That is a good post Frank and I agree with a lot of everything that others have posted as well… But, I can’t for one minute think that Dele doesn’t work hard enough, either for himself or for the team. I’m certain that a big part of his cheeky/bad-boy personality is what makes him the player he is in the first place. And, what we are seeing this season, in a way, is his maturing as a player and trying hard to get the right balance between still being able express himself freely with a football, whilst also attempting to be more disciplined in his game. I see him as in a transitional period. From Boy to Man, if you like. There will be the almost inevitable teething problems but, I think the lad learns fast… And I think that we will see him suddenly take a leap forward any time soon, rather than go backwards. … I hope so.

  • Yep, we’ve been there before with Gazza. Precocious talent but immature and unpredictable. Exciting and talented bt needs someone to put an arm round him. If Harry was permanent captain he could probably remind him of his responsibilities to the team instead of petulance and cocky behaviour giving him yellow cards and dislike from the media. Don’t think Lloris has the strength of personality to get through to Dele. Hope Poch is strong enough to get through to Dele’s immaturity and silliness but not stifle his drive and talent. We need Dele to keep the team in tact. We are developing a strong squad (spare No. 9 excepted). Dele was a brilliant acquisition.. I followed him before he signed and could not believe we caoptured him for £5 million. Absolute bargain but fantastic talent. England needs him too.

  • I could think of crossroads beckoning for many players, but Dele…..nah! Beckham didn’t quite have an introvert life, nor was he a perfect specimen of a footballer at Dele’s age, ask Fergie where the boot landed. Though I’d agree that Poch needs to sit him down for some serious talk, re. both on and off the field. I’d also give him another season (at his tender age) to re-evaluate his credentials. Hopefully a good run in CL and a sold display at the WC may just get him to focus a bit more. Despite the above, I DO think (now that we seem to have a bit of depth in the squad) he should be benched or subbed if not meeting the standards. Apart from Beckham, I can’t really cite another example to correlate Dele with. So, in effect, he is ‘special’ and very talented. COYS!

  • If Dele didn’t work hard enough and perform well enough in training he wouldn’t be in the squad for match day. In MP we trust!

  • True Geof, but I think with little in the way of alternatives, Poch has had to play certain players, even when they are not at their best. The same goes for SIssoko. With injuries our options in midfield had been severely restricted (Dembele off/on, Winks, Wanyama,) hence imo, Poch has had to include Sissoko and keep him happy with positive vibes in the media…ala Dele with his ‘like a bit of naughty’!

  • I don’t quite get why people keep saying that Dele needs resting or should be dropped or however it might be put. He hasn’t been that bad… And as Geof has already pointed out, if he didn’t work hard he wouldn’t be in the team. In fact, he would be out of the door. I don’t need to think too much myself about his work-rate to be honest. I can see it every time he plays.

    Also, he’s not exactly the bad boy that he is being made out to look anyway. In fact he is not that bad a ‘role model’ himself. (Even if he is not quite the clean-cut Harry Kane). When given his unstable upbringing and then his quick rise to fame at such a young age etc. None of this would’ve come easily for him. And to play at the level he now does, jumping two divisions at age 19, doesn’t just happen because of a precocious talent to kick a ball about etc, not these days anyhow.

    He is not a George Best or Charlie George or by any means akin to Gazza. None of these guys would last a weeks training in the modern game, let alone a full PL season, with the fitness levels that are now required, along with the discipline that is expected of them.

    Quite apart from all this, I don’t go along with the thinking that footballers have to be shinning examples of morality to the youth and outstanding role models of impeccable standing. They are just young human beings, not actual Gods. No matter what a certain poster from Brazil may think.

    Diving is not on in my book but neither is attempting to break a players leg every time you hit the field of play. Then again so called ‘leg-breakers’ were often celebrated by their teams supporters, (Roy Keane). ‘Divers’ were cheered on and one ‘fans favourite’ Spurs player (with a big reputation for diving), even used to celebrate his goals with a mock dive, along with his team mates, (Klinsmann). And, the Spurs fans loved him for it. Gazza was a seriously flawed genius of a player that was not just adored by THFC supporters but football supporters around the world. And yet the man nearly always eventually proved himself to be a liability to all his clubs and his country. Both on and off the pitch. Yet again, his clown like, court jester and drunken fool antics were celebrated… But, the man didn’t score as many goals for Spurs, as one Dele Alli has done already.

    Modern football has become quite enough sanitised as it is. And do we really need to be putting young and talented players through the cold rinse cycle for every little mistake they make?

    I was never amused by Gazza’s foolhardiness but I did feel sorry for him. He was and is a very troubled man. Dele at least brings a smile to my face almost every time he plays and in the grand scheme of things, is just getting on as best he can with playing the game of football. Which is what it’s all about, after all.

  • What I’m most concerned about is Dele’s football. Don’t really care about the off-field fabricated stuff. As an England fan, I started to notice issues under Hodgson and it has continued under Southgate. Neither of these guys know how to get the best out of Dele like Poch did last season. Now we’re in a situation where Poch isn’t getting the best out of him either but there are positive signs in the last month.

    Quite simply, at his best Dele had a telepathic understanding with Kane and Eriksen and was playing as a false number 9. He was like having a second striker in the team and a really healthy work-rate to go with it defensively. He was finding the balance between keeping things simple whilst once in a while throwing in a piece of skill that created the space. He was also getting as many assists as goals.

    It’s a tricky one to know how to get him back to his best. One thing I have noticed is that he has stopped finding the balance between keeping it simple and trying something elaborate. He would be much better going to the ball, getting it under and finding the simple pass. Trying that flick 4 times out of 5 is now getting predictable. I bet it not helping his and Spurs possession stats as well. The other thing he might want to copy from Kane is putting on those running spikes and seeing if he can find another yard of pace. It worked wonders for Harry who wasn’t the quickest. Sometimes with Dele, he looks a little slow and “catchable” so has to rely on his tricks.

    As for the diving, he just needs to cut it out like he has with the petulance he showed the last 2 season. Everyone has stopped talking about that and he comes across as ice cool most of the time nowadays. That shows he has it in him to take on advice and isn’t as arrogant as everyone wants to make out.

  • To stop the game, to punish people. Some 20 years ago, 30 years ago, it was like all congratulate the player when he tricks the referee. If you remember the football 30 years ago.
    “That is the football I was in love with when I was a child. Football is about trying to trick your opponent. You know? Yes or no? Tactic – what does tactic mean?
    “When you do some tactics it is to try to trick the opponent. You say, ‘Oh I play on the right but I’m going to finish on the left’.
    “It’s a mix that I am worried that maybe we are going to kill the game. We love this game.”
    This shows his thinking (Poch) is so far behind the times. he doesn’t like the idea of VAR, why? Because he knows that it will expose Delle as a cheat and as well as show that goals such as our 11 second one shouldn’t have been given due to Kane being in the opposition’s half before the kick off. Conning the ref in this fashion is cheating and I bet if the shoe were on the other foot Poch would be up there saying how much the other team were cheating and had conned the ref.

  • chris …. Not too sure what your point is. You seem to be implying that MP is a cheat? If that’s so I’d have to say it’s a bit unfair. The game has evolved whether we like it or not and there is so much money at stake these days that virtually everyone will look for ways to get an edge. Some of those ways could be seen as cheating but, if so, it is a level playing field in any case and the same rules and officialdom apply to all. It simply is what it is and there’s nothing we can do about it. The game will no doubt continue to evolve in terms of acceptable/unacceptable behaviour, rules, and technology. It was a lot more simple a few decades back.

  • Steve Jobs and Apple didn’t design technology for the consumer. They designed technology to change the consumer. As football fans, we have to get our heads around that concept as it’s coming. Fast forward a few years where VAR has evolved and normalised and the next Dele Alli won’t even bother diving. He’ll know it’s a completely fruitless experience as he won’t gain an advantage and will be wasting everybody’s time. In many ways, technology if implemented correctly will take us back to more of a pure game of football.

    If I think about Sunday’s game, yes Kane’s penalty would have been deemed offside, but ask yourselves would Dier’s penalty shout in the first half been given. With technology and implementing the actual rules of the game, I’m not sure I could find a logical reason where it wouldn’t have been given. They stole his advantage by playing the man and stopped him from getting a shot away. None of the media or football fans have even mentioned it but want to bang on about Dele diving or Kane offside.

  • As we have seen in recent media coverage of Poch being the father figure to young players. It is poch who can get through to Dele. Posters have said his broken home has affected him as it would any young boy 12 yrs of age… So I can see poch gradually getting through to Dele, as a heavy handed / authoritarian approach will just get him to rebel, and his playing form go rapidly downhill. His new agents have also had a big part to play, in telling him he can get millions more in wages, endorsements transfer to Spain etc. We all know of young guys who comeinto big money, adoration, media coverage, new “friends” turning his head… I remember about the young lad in Norfolk won ?6m on lottery then spent it all in 3 years and back to where he was broke. Geoff has said… in poch we trust, and I agree the manager is the best person to help him, along with Lloris, Toby, Jan.. also Harry as his peer at Spurs.

  • Im pleased with Dele, inconsistent but that’s to be expected for such a young man. Maybe not the perfect role model nor perfect professional, but doesnt need to be.

  • I personally don’t like the idea of VAR in football. But I can accept change and it WILL change the game. I don’t know if that will be for better or worse, maybe/probably, just different. My point about those ex-players was to highlight just exactly how much the game has changed in a relatively short time and of course, younger generations won’t have seen it as I once did and only know it for what it is now. Our FA cup match tonight will be using VAR. I think they should all give us a complimentary dive to test it out for us. And maybe Poch can encourage his players to cheat, cheat, cheat……. In fact, Poch had already publically admonished Dele for diving last season…… I’d also like to point out that when Dele came back from his CL ban for a nasty challenge, he just happened to score two goals v Real, to put us 2-0 up…. Swings and roundabouts and this s all just relative to the game of football. They all cheat or foul in one way or another, if we are talking about the strict rules of the game… It’s to do with that beautiful human trait we know as imperfection. And I love it! ……. Of course, we don’t like it if Spurs are at the other end of the cheating. We are biased, as much as any other supporter is, of any other club.

Comments are closed.