Just how important is Dele Alli to Tottenham Hotspur and England? After scoring one of the Premier League’s greatest goals against Crystal Palace, the plaudits have been spilling out for the young 19-year-old. The goal stood as a vivid reminder of the potential of the former MK Dons player, who could really push on to achieving great things.
Before too much excitement is stirred, it’s vital to remember that players like Dele Alli have come and gone, some to success and others to mediocrity and even failure. Just because Alli has come so far, doesn’t mean he can’t fall back down again. That being said, his attitude and his work-rate seem to match his ability, unlike other pretentious yet talented players that have fallen off the track. Alli could truly make it.
The importance of Mauricio Pochettino and Roy Hodgson alike come into the spotlight here, as he must be monitored carefully. By all means, Hodgson could start Alli in England’s first game in France this year, but a more cautious approach to easing him into his first international tournament may be preferable. Similarly, Pochettino must continue to encourage him to stick to his guns and to keep working hard. There is room to be experimental and to push him on for further development, which is all under Pochettino’s and Hodgson’s jurisdiction.
Alli has taken to the Premier League like a duck to water and has really caused defences problems and has cemented himself firmly in Pochettino’s starting eleven. Hodgson has already blooded him into the England team in the lead up the Euro 2016 tournament, which allowed him to grab a fantastic first goal for his country. It is yet to be seen how truly effective he is on the international stage, but he is one of the creative, exciting players which England seem to lack.
England’s straightforward group should allow Hodgson to test Alli and the rest of his squad fully in these early stages. Spurs still have plenty of games left to play and sit very promisingly in fourth position, and he could provide that spark that Spurs require to push for the Champions League and even for a third-placed finish, which would be Spurs’ highest finish in 36 years.
Although it’s impossible to predict where this talented youngster will be, nevertheless, if his meteoric rise continues in such scintillating style, then both Tottenham Hotspur and England have an incredibly exciting player in their ranks. Alli could then be a player to rely on to create chances in any game internationally, or on the domestic stages. He already appears to have the right skills and attitude, yet there is so much room to develop further.
Could Alli be Spurs’ next Gareth Bale or Luka Modrić? In mitigation, comparisons to such players are too premature, although he has already got the better of Modrić with that nutmeg. It is possible that he could become as important as the likes of Bale were, but with the squad that Pochettino is building, the team stands out instead of the individuals. Tottenham aren’t a one man team any longer.
What a goal that is! Dele Alli ??
— Gareth Bale (@GarethBale11) January 23, 2016
Overall, Dele Alli promises a lot to his domestic and international teams. The Premier League is already under attack from the influential youngster, and with the Euros looming this year, Alli could truly emerge as a young footballer. It is vital that Alli avoids injury and keeps up his form, as it is a slippery slope to success and Alli must not falter if he wants to add to that acclaimed nutmeg collection.