Dele Alli has been linked with a move away from Tottenham this month – and Jose Mourinho’s prediction shows he may have seen it coming.
The 25-year-old has made 18 appearances for the Lilywhites so far this season but scored just one Premier League goal, which came in the second league fixture of the season.
Alli has struggled to find his strongest position in Antonio Conte’s side and when he has been given the chance, has failed to consistently impress.
The more attacking-minded midfielders in Alli, Giovani Lo Celso and Tanguy Ndombele have all been linked with moves away from N17 in the final days of the January transfer window.
The midfielder went from being one of the best young players in Europe to now struggling to get into the matchday squad.
During this campaign so far, Alli has been on and off the bench during matchdays but wasn’t included in the squad in Spurs’ most recent match against Chelsea.
The January window has seen Tottenham linked with both incomings and outgoings and Alli is among those names, with links to the likes of Newcastle and Southampton.
In Spurs’ Amazon documentary All or Nothing, Alli had a meeting with his boss at the time, Mourinho, who gave his honest verdict on the midfielder, who was in his early 20s at the time.
“I like you as a player, I like you also as a kid. I think you are a nice kid,” Mourinho explained. “I don’t want to be your father because you have a father. I don’t want to be your uncle or your old brother. I just want to be your coach but with a good connection.
“So, I have to tell you always what I think. Inside of you maybe you tell me to [explicit], but I have to tell you exactly what I’ve seen.
“For me, since the beginning, I had no doubts about your potential. I saw you do incredible matches and incredible things but I always felt that you had ups and downs.”
It has been just over six years since Alli scored his stunning volley against Crystal Palace, but it has been keeping his form at that top-level that he has struggled with.
“There is a huge difference between a player that keeps consistency and the player that has moments and that is what makes the difference between a top, top player and a player with top potential,” Mourinho explained.
“It’s something that you don’t have to share with me, I think is just for you to analyse yourself.
“Why you have in your career these ups and downs, I don’t know. I don’t know if it has to do with your lifestyle. If in one period you are an amazing professional. If in another period you become a party boy, going out, I don’t know. I have no idea. Only you can know that.
“Yesterday I was 20 and today I’m 56. Time flies and I think one day you will regret if you don’t reach what you can reach.
“I’m not expecting you to be the man of the match every game. I’m not expecting you to score goals every game. I want just to tell you that I think you will regret.
“You should demand more from you, not me demanding from you.”
No one knows whether Alli isn’t happy at Tottenham, if he is just struggling to find form or if there is an external factor causing his drop in form, but whatever it is, is an issue Antonio Conte hasn’t been able to solve since arriving and has seen subsequent links to other clubs.
Alli has already spoken about interest from Newcastle – one of those credited with an interest – before he made the move to Tottenham in 2015.
“Liverpool were at the time [interested], but I don’t know how serious they were, but I remember Newcastle was quite a big one at the time,” the 25-year-old explained when speaking to Sky Sports last season.
“But from a family point of view, I was going up there by myself, and they were a bit worried about me being up there by myself so far away, it’s not local to them.
“In the end, the decision was mine, but I don’t know what happened, the deal didn’t go through anyway, and I don’t think they wanted me in the end!”
With only a number of days left before the January transfer window deadline, it is a waiting game to see where the 25-year-old moves to, if he does leave N17.
Source by Football London