By Dominic Toner
Tottenham playmaker Dele Alli has admitted that Mauricio Pochettino has held crunch talks with him this season and supported the rash side of his game.
The 20-year-old midfielder has emerged as a crucial player for Spurs, but does have a reputation of losing his cool at times.
The England international was shown a red card for a dangerous high tackle against Belgian side Gent as the north London club crashed out of the Europa League.
However, Alli has revealed that he has had advice from his manager Pochettino on a number of occasions and has received his full backing.
“I felt horrible straight after it (red card v Gent) but it’s important I put it behind me and make sure I learn from it and keep improving,” Alli said, as quoted by the Daily Express. “Thankfully, Mauricio Pochettino knows that’s who I am.
“We’ve had a few talks and he’s been really supportive. It’s good to have a manager behind me who trusts and supports me as much as he does.”
Alli has the extra pressure of helping fill the void left by his injured team-mate Harry Kane over the next few weeks and got off to the perfect start at the weekend.
The fiery character helped Spurs record a narrow 2-1 victory over Southampton on Sunday and the result means they stay second in the Premier League table.
The attacking midfielder scored his 17th goal of the season from the penalty spot, with 14 of them coming in the league.
He has thrived in Pochettino’s system this campaign and enjoyed playing alongside Christian Eriksen, plus Kane in an exciting frontline.
Alli will now turn his attention to England during the international break and will be hoping to continue his form for the national side.
In other Tottenham news, Dermot Gallagher has delivered his verdict on two penalty calls against Southampton.