Former Tottenham midfielder Jermaine Jenas has told BBC Sport that he didn’t understand Jose Mourinho’s decision to withdraw Dele Alli at half-time on Sunday.
Tottenham slipped to a 1-0 defeat at home to Everton as Carlo Ancelotti reigned supreme of the Portuguese manager, getting the Blues off to a flyer in the process.
According to Who Scored, Alli had a 91% pass success during the first-half and although he didn’t have a shot he was probing and asking questions of the Everton defence.
Jenas didn’t think the decision was a wise one and in truth, the decision did give Everton a firmer foothold in the game.
The ex-England man told BBC what he thought of Mourinho’s tactical decision on last night’s edition of Match of the Day 2.
He told the BBC: “Spurs lacked everything and even Mourinho’s subs were poor.
“Taking off Dele Alli at half-time didn’t make sense to me – at least he had looked like nicking a goal in the first half.
“I know it’s only the first game of the season, but the situation does already seem stark.”
Jenas saying Alli looked like nicking a goal is perhaps wide of the mark, considering the 24-year-old didn’t have a shot on goal.
He was dangerous though and linked play up nicely between the attackers selected by Mourinho.
Alli didn’t have a bad season during 2019/20, scoring nine goals and registering six assists, typically operating in the No.10 role.
Mourinho is clearly demanding more of the £100k-a-week (Spotrac) player and obviously wasn’t as impressed with his first-half showing yesterday as Jenas was.
Alli needs to keep his head down and continue to work hard, as the chances will come under Mourinho this season.