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Pochettino backs ‘mature’ Alli to handle pressure

Dele Alli has been an inspiration since joining Spurs

Tottenham Hotspur manager Mauricio Pochettino has played down concerns that promising midfielder Dele Alli could buckle under the weight of expectation and has highlighted the maturity shown by the 19-year-old this campaign.

Alli, who joined the north London club from second tier side Milton Keynes Dons in 2015, has been instrumental in Tottenham’s bid to end a 55-year wait for an English title, scoring seven goals and claiming 12 assists in 29 Premier League matches.

The midfielder, who won his first England cap in October, has also impressed on international duty, scoring a stunning goal in the victory against France in November and was inspirational in Saturday’s 3-2 win over Germany.

“Am I worried about the hype? No, you can see the whole season how he has managed the pressure. He is very calm, very mature,” Pochettino told British media.

“He has managed the pressure and the popularity and how to be a senior player and play for the national team. He is very calm. Now he is fresh, at a good level, he has a good mentality. He is mature enough. We have no worries about his future.”

Tottenham, who are second in the table, five points behind Leicester City with seven games remaining, travel to face ninth-placed Liverpool at Anfield on Saturday.

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