According to ESPN Mauricio Pochettino has said he believes there is too much focus on “easy target” Dele Alli after the midfielder was again accused of diving in our 1-0 win at Crystal Palace on Sunday.
Dele has been under a lot scrutiny since being booked for diving in the 2-2 draw at Liverpool earlier this month ,his third yellow card for simulation since joining Spurs in 2015, more than any other Premier League player in that period.
An ex England strikers Alan Shearer and Gary Lineker wrote on Twitter that Dele had been guilty of a dive when he tumbled over Palace goalkeeper Wayne Hennessey, having earlier been sent to ground by Patrick van Arnholt.
The article goes on to say that as the players left the pitch following Harry Kane’s late winner, Van Arnholt appeared to say something to Alli, who was led away from him by Kane and Christian Eriksen as he was booed off by the home fans.
“He is an easy target for everyone, Dele. He is an easy target and is surrounded,”:Pochettino said.
“I think [Crystal Palace manager] Roy Hodgson spoke very well in his press conference before the game [when he said Alli did not dive]. I think we need to stop thinking too much about him, or help people create this reputation.
Pochettino added: “It is his game, he plays like this, he is so competitive but I think because he has this focus [on him] sometimes other players are worse and nothing happens because Dele is an easy target.
Pochettino went on to say: “The incident of Hennessey on Ben Davies was a clear penalty and I never complained about that, but I don’t know, I didn’t see the action [of Hennessy on Alli] so I cannot say.It won’t affect his confidence. Dele is a special kid. He is going to play, he is going to show his quality and he is not worried about what people say.”
Roy Hodgson, who gave Alli his England debut, had defended him before the match and did again in speaking afterwards saying: “I’d advise Patrick not to square up to Dele Alli. My money would be on Dele Alli.I don’t think he was looking for a penalty, and I never expected the referee to blow for a penalty.
Hodgson added: “When all the talk in the mass media is about a certain player, about him and him diving, that’s what happens. The public jump on the bandwagon — they’re trying to get every bit of advantage for their team.”
It goes on to say how right-back Serge Aurier set an unwanted Premier League record after becoming the first player to commit three foul throws in a match.
“We are going to practice every day! I promise that to the fans too,” :Pochettino said. “The first one he tried to get the ball into play quickly and then maybe made a mistake.
He added: “It was probably a little bit too much pressure from the referee, similar to Dele. When Dele does something he gets the focus, it was the same with Serge with the ball.I said: ‘Come on, you are going to get me sacked!’ It looks like we are so bad and we don’t practice the throw-ins. He needs time. It is normal in the Premier League.”
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