Jose Mourinho ‘angry’ with Dele Alli for role in build-up to Stoke goal against Tottenham

Dele Alli was unhappy to be taken off by his manager during the Carabao Cup quarter-final

Lawrence Ostlere
Wednesday 23 December 2020 20:47
Dele Alli reacts to being taken off
Dele Alli reacts to being taken off
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Jose Mourinho was “angry” with Dele Alli after his midfielder’s lackadaisical flick conceded possession and ultimately led to Stoke City’s equaliser in their Carabao Cup quarter-final.

Spurs went on to win the game 3-1 after second-half goals by Ben Davies and Harry Kane added to Gareth Bale’s opener, but the manager was unhappy with Alli’s contribution.  

“Yes, for me a player that plays in that position is a player that has to link and create and not to create problems for his own team,” Mourinho said afterwards. "I was angry.

"In that situation, an objective counter-attack would probably end with a goal, and it ended with a counter-attack behind our defenders.

"We were unbalanced because when you are in possession you have full-backs out wide and another midfielder in a different line and they caught us in a counter-attack and they transformed the result of the game that was totally in our hands, so yes I am upset."

Alli has been only a bit-part player this season and has regularly found himself left out of the entire matchday squad. Mourinho has praised Alli’s professionalism in the circumstances, while the midfielder has been linked with a January move away from the club.

Mourinho also confirmed that Bale, who was substituted at half-time, was feeling an injury.

“[It] was his decision,” Mourinho said of Bale’s change. "Something he felt in the last part of the first half and he didn't want to come out before the second half so he stayed. While he was walking to the dressing room he told me immediately that he couldn't come for the second half.

"Something I think with (his) calf. I'm not sure as at that time I just want to reorganise the team and make the change."

Mourinho has won the League Cup every time he has got to the semi-final, so that bodes well for Spurs on his fifth appearance in the last four.

With a one-legged semi-final and a Wembley showpiece all that is between them and silverware, Mourinho knows this competition is their best chance of ending their trophy drought.

"To win this trophy we need to win two matches. But they are two very difficult matches," he added.

"To win other trophies you need to win more matches. The FA Cup didn't start for us. The Europa League we are in the last 32.

"We are really far from getting there. In the Premier League I told you already what we are.

"But they are a very difficult two matches. If you win the first one you have to win the second.

"The teams that are going to be there are very difficult teams. Man City are very difficult. Brentford, for me, the way they play they are not Championship, they are Premier League.

"And Everton or Manchester United are one of the very top teams. But we are in the semi-finals and we will be there to fight."

Additional reporting by PA

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