Dele Alli Distracted By Potential Move Away From Tottenham
Jose Mourinho Admits Distraction
Despite admitting that the midfielder could be distracted by last months transfer speculation surrounding a move away from Tottenham, manager Jose Mourinho is looking to move away from discussions about his future.
Speaking ahead of Wednesday night’s FA Cup defeat at Everton, the Spurs boss said that Dele Alli would get “10 or 15 minutes” from the bench. The England midfielder came on with 13 minutes remaining – six minutes before a Harry Kane goal took the tie to extra time.
Despite being booked with two minutes remaining of normal time, the additional 30 minutes gave Alli some unexpected additional game time.
However, the cameo appearance from the 24-year-old was his first in all competitions since Tottenham faced Marine in the third round of the same competition 31 days previous. The midfielder has been struggling with a calf problem, but his omission from the squad has been a regular occurrence throughout the course of the season.
What Was Said
Speaking to the media before the game at Goodison Park, Mourinho said: “There’s nothing to speak about anymore. It’s possible that he was distracted, yeah.
“But I was expecting that this story is over. Now it’s about him working to be back in the team, to have minutes.”
He added: “When you are on the pitch, you have to show how good you are and how much you deserve to play. It’s very simple.
“So in this moment, everything is normal with him. He’s fit, he’s training. Probably he is selected tonight (Wednesday) and on the bench and plays. If not, he’ll be working to improve his condition.”
For the majority of January, Dele Alli was linked with a move away from Tottenham, and to one club in particular – Paris Saint-Germain.
Even before the arrival of former Spurs manager Mauricio Pochettino, Les Parisiens wanted the England midfielder to join the ranks. The speculation and desire to sign Alli became all the more apparent after the Argentines appointment.
However, Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy refused to allow Alli to leave. This was down in part to no more incomings to provide cover for Alli’s departure, but also because the club wanted to see the 24-year-old fight for his place.
According to Fabrizio Romano, talks between the parties were at an “advanced” stage and that a deal was close to being struck. However, this was before the departure of Gedson Fernandez, who left Spurs to join Galatasary.
Alli Game Time at Tottenham
It’s been a torrid time at Tottenham for Dele Alli this season. The midfielder has made 13 appearances in all competitions but has managed just 515 minutes of football.
His one and only Premier League start of the season came on the opening day against Everton but he was substituted off at half time. Since, Alli has managed just 29 minutes of league football and has been omitted from 11 matchday squads. He managed just two more starts this season, against Marine and Stoke City in the FA and League Cup respectively.
As Mourinho has hinted, the England midfielder needs to regain his focus back on Tottenham and look to impress in order to get more game time. If not, then he could become another talented footballer that fails to reach his potential.