Pundit slams Tottenham star: ‘Obsession’ with conning referees

Pundit Garth Crooks has stated that Tottenham Hotspur star Dele Alli has an ‘obsession’ with gamesmanship – in particular tricking referees into awarding penalties.

The 20-year-old has come under criticism in the past for simulation – most notably within the opposing 18-yard box, and the former Spurs forward believes that in order for the attacking midfielder to become a great he needs to remove his current stigma.


“The only feature I don’t like about Alli’s game is his obsession with making contact with his opponent in the opposition’s penalty area and making out he’s been impeded”, the 59-year-old told BBC Sport.

“Penalties should be awarded, not prized out of referees. If he wants to be a Steven Gerrard or Frank Lampard, he must eradicate that from his game and promote the things that make people want to pay good money to see him.”

The England international shot to fame at White Hart Lane with a succession of outstanding performances following his arrival for £5million from Milton Keynes Dons in 2015.

Since then, under the management of Mauricio Pochettino, the youngster has gone on to continually improve, and is the highest out-and-out midfield goalscorer in the Premier League so far this season with 14, as well as four assists.

Even through the 20-year-old is having his most successful top-flight season to date, Alli has shown immaturity – particularly ill-discipline, and the highly sought-after and admired playmaker will need to suppress these characteristics moving forward to become a Tottenham great.