Former Premier League striker Kevin Phillips has urged Dele Alli to leave Tottenham Hotspur to kickstart his career again.
The Lowdown: Alli struggling
The 25-year-old’s hopes of making a real impression under Nuno Espirito Santo were dealt a blow on Sunday as Spurs hosted Aston Villa.
The £27m-valued midfielder started the three previous Premier League matches (Transfermarkt), all of which ended in defeat for Tottenham. However, without him in the starting line-up against the Villans, Tottenham picked up an important 2-1 victory.
The Latest: Phillips urges Alli departure
“I don’t think he’s been the same player for the last couple of seasons, I have to be honest.
“In my own personal opinion, I don’t think Tottenham fans would want to see him leave.
“But I think it might be that time where he needs a fresh challenge to get the best out of Dele Alli.
“For me, when he plays, he never looks happy. I never see that smile on his face. He’s got his shoulders up, his chest out.
“Maybe a fresh challenge, you’d have to ask the player. There’s certainly a talent there.
“When you are Dele Alli and you’re not performing, things aren’t going well, ultimately you are going to come in for criticism.
“Harry Kane did earlier in the season when he wasn’t scoring goals.
“Part of me thinks maybe he feels a fresh challenge, a new club, might just reignite his career. Get him back to where he was a couple of seasons ago.”
The Verdict: New start needed
For a while now, Alli has failed to live up to the high standards he had previous set. Last season, he made just 15 appearances in the league, only managing to provide one assist.
In the past, he has admitted he is unable to do the things he previously could, and he looks a shadow of the talent who burst onto the scene after joining from MK Dons and later scored 22 goals in one season for Tottenham.
Should Tottenham sell Alli?
Right now, it looks unlikely that he will resurrect his career with Spurs. A fresh start, without the same expectations and pressure, could well enable him to find his best level. In January and next summer, questions will be asked about his future – it remains to be seen whether he stays in north London or takes Phillips’ advice and tries to reignite his career elsewhere.
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