What’s eating Dele?

Image: SpursWeb

While the world and his wife continue to laud over Harry Kane, many critics have question the contribution that Dele has made this season.

WhoScored.com decided to investigate and here is our analysis of their investigation..

Dele has enjoyed a rapid rise in  with Spurs. In his first two seasons at White Hart Lane he scored a credible 10 times and assisted nine, and followed that up with an impressive 18 goals and seven assists last year.

However he has made a very slow start this season. Slow, that is, compared to the high standards Alli has set himself.

With Christian Eriksen, he is one of the two players behind Harry Kane in , with his main role to get as close to his Kane as possible in order to make surging late runs into the box and attack the space Kane leaves, a role he’s executed near perfectly since his arrival.

He has scored 30 Premier League goals since the start of the 2015/16 season.However only two of those have come this season. It’s not for want of trying, though. Alli is averaging 2.7 shots per 90 in England’s top tier this term, the same as in 2015/16 and a marginal dip from last season (2.8).

Further analysis shows Alli as having just one shot per 90 in the opposition penalty box so far, his lowest in his three Premier League seasons. (Yes I know that may increase as the season progresses)

Opponents now seem to be putting more bodies between him and the goal, meaning they are able to clear the danger before the Dele even has the chance to get his shot away.

With that, the former MK Dons man has looked to create chances for others, which has seen his key passes per game rise to 2.2, his best in a Premier League campaign so far. That has only translated in to one assist so but that number should improve; once others stop spurning those chances.

Alli has been fouled more times this season than before on average 4.1 times per 90 game this season, and an increase on the 2.2 times he was fouled on average per match last season.

It’s becoming obvious that preventing Alli from playing his natural game , not to mention hoping to wind him up,means his contribution has slowed down this season

Dele’s output has dropped to a goal every 266 minutes this season from the one league goal every 169.2 minutes he averaged in 2016/17.

This presents another learning curve for the youngster as he strives to become one of the best in the game. “It’s true that everyone can do better but I am happy. It is a period that he needs to find his balance,” Mauricio Pochettino said of Alli after he scored Spurs’ only goal in the Carabao Cup win over Barnsley.

There is no doubt he has the unwavering faith of his manager, which is understandable considering Alli’s impact under the Argentinian, and an assist in the 3-2 win over West Ham certainly helped as the player looks to regain his best form.

Though his dip in form is of concern, Alli has the ability to get out of this slump. He has shouldered an awful lot of responsibility, especially for a guy so young,since he’s arrived at Tottenham and is still developing his game. He will rediscover his form and perhaps today’s lunch time  visit to Huddersfield might be the perfect place to start.

stats: WhoScored.com

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  1. Personally I think that he is distracted, he is looking for a new manager and doesn't have any close family members to do this for him like other players do.
    I also think that he may be getting too big for his boots so to speak.


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