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Thursday, 7 January 2016

Dele Alli the exception rather than the rule

Dele Alli the exception rather than the rule

Peterborough owner Darragh MacAnthony spoke recently to BBC Radio Cambridgeshire and explained that Tottenham had made an enquiry for one of his players and spoke about David Pleat.

“To be fair to Tottenham Hotspur they have faith in the Football League, they did what they did with (Dele Alli) and they were also enquiring about one of our players in November. The reason they are doing that because they have people like David Pleat, who is a great fan of the Football League, working under Daniel Levy. 
“David Pleat, in my opinion, made the Dele Alli deal happen and could have made another deal happen with one of ours. “David Pleat is an old school guy but he knows the value of the Football League and some of their players.”

When Tottenham brought Dele Alli they loaned him back to MK Dons for the rest of the season and then the word from the training ground was that Mauricio Pochettino wanted to ease Dele Alli into the first team this season. However, Dele Alli had other ideas. He impressed everyone in training with his technical ability, but more than that his confidence in his ability.

To be a top player skill isn't enough, ideally you need to be an assertive character internally, by that I mean you must have internal confidence in yourself and be prepared to use your ability. You can bot be afraid of failure as that inhibits play.

When given his chance he grasped it with both hands and made his mark, now he is an essential part of the side at just 19. That encourages others to join us, 17-year-old Ebbsfleet striker Shilow Tracey has been at the training ground wearing Spurs kit and had a medical this week so clearly he will be announced officially soon. He is, of course, one for the future.

simply because Dele Alli has jumped from League One to the Premier League and England does not mean every player can make the same jump or that it will happen so fast. If you are good enough you'll get your chance. If you are good enough to take it great, if not then a more patient approach is needed, the approach originally mapped out for Alli. It is this latter approach that will happen for most. They would be introduced to our fitness levels and eased into the squad with cameos here and there, much like Josh Onomah is being developed.

He is getting game time to get him used to the atmosphere, the match day rigmarole, there is as much to master off the pitch as there is on it and mentally a player has to be able to cope with it. You don't generally throw them in to behave like a startled duck, you give them little tasters so they get comfortable and grow in confidence.

The players we sign from lower divisions will be youngsters, there will still be a learning process for them. How they cope mentally with everything will help to determine their progress. Dele Alli was an exception to the rule, he was already earmarked as a serious future talent. That sort of player doesn't grow on trees so I wouldn't expect any domestic signing making the same impact in the second half of the season.

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