Following a rough week for the England international, in which he did not feature at all in either of the Three Lions’ friendlies, Spurs fans rejoiced in his success against their London rivals.
The result meant that the gap between Spurs and Chelsea is a massive eight points, leaving the Blues facing a season without Champions League football.
Alli was at the heart of the toppling of Chelsea, harassing their backbone at everything chance and showcasing his trademark attacking flair.
During a match in which Alvaro Morata broke his scoring drought, Harry Kane made his return from injury, and Christian Eriksen scored a wonder goal, Alli nonetheless stole the headlines on social media.
His brace sparked comparisons with a fellow England international, invited praise from ex-Premier League stars, and united the Tottenham Twitterverse in joy.
Contributing to all three Spurs goals in a rampant 3-1 away victory, onlookers applauded his impressive work rate that led to Eriksen’s opening strike.
Dele Alli chasing down a nothing ball made that btw
— Billie (@Billie_T) April 1, 2018
And after the Englishman’s well-taken goal 17 minutes into the second half, football fans delighted in Alli’s sublime technique.
That’s a world class piece of play by Alli. The run, the touch, the finish. Wonderful ball as well but it’s the type of goal that if a foreign signing had scored we’d be going mad.
— Tom McDermott (@MrTomMcDermott) April 1, 2018
Nice Bergkamp impression from Alli with the touch and finish.
— Priya Ramesh (@Priya8Ramesh) April 1, 2018
Wow that Spurs goal is incredible. What at touch and finish by Dele Alli! That pass too! ?
— Cristian Nyari (@Cnyari) April 1, 2018
And with Alli doubling his goal tally and Tottenham’s lead just four minutes later, the Twittersphere delighted in Alli proving his doubters wrong. Many mocked those in the media who had depicted Alli as having a slump season.
really too bad about that off year dele alli is having
— Michael Caley (@MC_of_A) April 1, 2018
DELE ALLI! WHAT DIP IN FORM? ???
— Nikhil Saglani (@Nikhil_Saglani) April 1, 2018
MAN LIKE DELE ALLI 2-1 SHUT UP HATERSSSSSSS
— Max (@xDuoMax) April 1, 2018
Even ex-Tottenham player Steven Pienaar chimed in with praise for Alli’s response to his doubters.
That’s how you answer your critics Delle Alli
— Steven Pienaar (@therealstevenpi) April 1, 2018
The match marked his 100th Premier League appearance, a landmark which he has marked with an impressive goal and assist tally.
Dele Alli has 36 goals and 25 assists in 100 Premier League appearances.
He's a 21-year-old midfielder.
Some people still don't think he's good.
— Lewis (@LGAmbrose) April 1, 2018
Dele Alli now has as many goals and assists in his first 100 Premier League games (61) as Eden Hazard had.
— bet365 (@bet365) April 1, 2018
With the World Cup approaching, the conversation inevitably turned to the battle between Alli and Jesse Lingard for a starting spot.
Jesse Lingard taught Dele Alli that.
— Ryan. ? (@Vintage_Utd) April 1, 2018
Imagine thinking Lingard is even anywhere near Alli
— TJ (@ftbltj) April 1, 2018
Not much need for the pissy Lingard/Alli takes really. England have them both, and that's a great thing.
— Daniel Storey (@danielstorey85) April 1, 2018
Is Erik Lamela about to have his best season yet as a Tottenham player?
The Argentine made a real impact against Fulham.
Erik Lamela impressed as Tottenham recorded a 2-1 victory over London rivals Fulham on Saturday.
The Argentine international hasn’t quite lived up to the reputation that accompanied his £25.7 million price when he moved from Roma in August 2013.
While he has threatened to show his true potential at times, he has never been able to achieve the level of consistency that warrants a regular starting spot for Spurs.
Nonetheless, fans were treated to the Argentine at his very best when he broke from his own half, dribbling past the entire Fulham midfield, before laying off the ball to Harry Kane for his goal at the weekend.
He complemented this moment with a confident cameo display from the bench, in which he threatened the opponents’ goal on two occasions, while fulfilling his role defensively, breaking up several Fulham counter-attacks.
Despite not getting as many minutes as he would have liked, Lamela was hugely influential in turning the course of the tie for the Lilywhites, and this could see him rewarded with his first start of the campaign in the not too distant future.
Having a fit and firing Erik Lamela gives Pochettino another excellent option for rotation in attack. After his cameo at Wembley, there is a feeling that the 26-year-old is well prepared for his best season as a Tottenham player.
Tottenham’s Anthony Martial decision looked justified against Brighton
The Frenchman was poor against Brighton after summer in which Tottenham tried to sign him.
There were plenty of poor performances from the Manchester United players. The likes of Eric Bailly, Victor Lindelof and even David De Gea did not cover themselves in glory. But Anthony Martial might have been the pick of the bunch.
With Alexis Sanchez missing the Frenchman got a surprise start but failed to take his opportunity. He looked disinterested at times and was anonymous throughout, before being hauled off by Mourinho.
“After thinking about all the factors and possibilities, Anthony wants to leave Manchester United. There are lots of factors, and right now it’s too early to talk about them…”
It comes at the end of a summer in which it seemed he would leave. The player wanted to go, as confirmed by his agent.
Tottenham Hotspur were heavily linked with his signature. However, as reported by the Evening Standard, Spurs were never going to pay the asking price for the French international – set at a cool £80 million by the Old Trafford hierarchy.
At one point toward the end of the transfer window, it appeared that things have softened and a deal might go through. But Tottenham did not get their man.
Based on the evidence on display this afternoon, Tottenham fans might be pleased. But his display today shows exactly why he should have been allowed to join Tottenham this summer.
Clearly, he is not happy. Because on his day the 21-year-old is a devastating forward with the ability to leave even the best defences in tatters.
A move to Tottenham could have reinvigorated his spirit and career. As it is, he is stuck at United where he looks set to cut a destitute figure until January at least. If he carries on this form, then Tottenham are unlikely to come knocking on the door again.
Three selection headaches Tottenham’s Mauricio Pochettino faces ahead of Manchester United trip
The Argentinian made two changes against Fulham having beaten Newcastle and despite the impressive win at Wembley, could make more before heading to the north-west with several doubts over key men in the team.
Here are some of the biggest decisions he will have to make over the week ahead…
Ben Davies or Danny Rose?
Ben Davies has had a poor pre-season and a disappointing start to the Premier League season, potentially opening the door for a return for Danny Rose. Linked with an exit in the summer, Rose was on the bench against Fulham and could be applying the pressure on the Welshman who took his place last season.
It seems unlikely that Pochettino would make such a change for such an important fixture, but equally he may not want to gamble on Davies costing his team with an error.
Lucas Moura in attack?
One of the best performers throughout pre-season and, in particular, against Fulham, has been Lucas Moura. The Brazilian has played as a second striker and been impressive, creating and finishing chances and posing an alternative threat to Harry Kane.
Yet, selecting Moura means that Pochettino must sacrifice a midfielder such as Moussa Dembele, which he may be reluctant to do going to Old Trafford. This decision will be a clear reflection of how confident Pochettino feels about his team’s chances of a win.
Is it right to play Toby Alderweireld?
Goal were among many sources to claim that the Belgian was close to joining Jose Mourinho’s side this summer as speculation continued throughout the transfer window. Alderweireld returned to the line-up for only his sixth appearance for the club in 2018 against Fulham, but Pochettino may have doubts.
The coach could question whether Alderweireld’s mentality would be correct to face a club he reportedly wanted to sign for in only his second appearance of the season, and with the likes of Eric Dier ready to step in, he may opt to be cautious.
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