Jamie Redknapp and Graeme Souness clashed on on Sky Sports on Sunday over Dele Alli, which left the former asking: “Why are you laughing?”
The duo were discussing Dele Alli’s return to the Spurs line-up under Ryan Mason after Tottenham’s comfortable win over Wolves. Alli is still yet to complete a full game this season but managed a joint-best of 82 minutes against Wolves. And afterwards the attacking midfielder was hailed by Mason for his display.
Alli, 25, said he was “enjoying his football again” after hitting the post in a dominant 2-0 home win. Alli was frozen out by axed boss Jose Mourinho and almost left the club in January. But Mason has reinstated Alli, playing in midfield behind an attacking front three of Harry Kane, Gareth Bale and Son Heung-min.
His performance led to a discussion in the studio about Alli’s ability and the reasons behind his lack of game time under Mourinho. And Redknapp laid the blame solely at the door of Mourinho.
Redknapp said: “If Jose Mourinho doesn’t pick you, it doesn’t mean anything really. We’ve seen what he did to Luke Shaw and players like that.
“Since he’s left, look at the player he’s turned into. Jose Mourinho seems to want to fall out with a lot of his players. He [Alli] is a quality player. He’s 25 years of age and averages nearly one in three [goals] every game.
“If you can’t get him into the team – and we’ve seen this with Gareth Bale since Jose’s gone. This is a manager who has won everything. You can’t keep falling out with your players.”
“He’s got tremendous ability”
Jamie Redknapp and Graeme Souness thinks next season Dele Alli has to live up to his full potential in a Tottenham shirt pic.twitter.com/OkkIrEnJG6
— Sky Sports Premier League (@SkySportsPL) May 16, 2021
Souness wasn’t so sure. “But he’s done it for a reason.”
Redknapp replied: “There is no reason. The reason is he likes to look everywhere rather than himself. It’s a fact. You can’t say… one in three he gets, Graeme. Do you not want to utilise that? Have him on the bench…”
‘Too much too soon’
Souness said: “I am not doubting his qualities. I would love him to sit here and answer our questions. I think, from the outside looking in, it’s a classic case of too much too soon. Too much stardom too soon. Too much of everything too soon and he’s dropped into an armchair. Please God, for him and Tottenham’s sake, [I hope] he gets back to what he was.”
Redknapp: “I don’t disagree with that. I am a big fan, but he can do more. He should look at this season now and go, ‘where can I go from here?’ because he’s too good a player not to be in the squad. And I know that Jose will fall out with his players, but he’s also got to look at himself.
“He’s got tremendous ability. But he’s got to come back next season – and no disrespect – ram it down the likes of Graeme’s throat and say ‘I can do this’, because his numbers… one in three for an attacking midfield player, I think it’s only Frank Lampard and [Steven] Gerrard who have probably got better than that…Why are you laughing?
Souness added: “There is a player trapped in that body. Show us. Prove us all wrong.”
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