Why Tottenham Hotspur star Dele Alli's recent form has left Mauricio Pochettino with a dilemma

Tottenham WHL

The 19-year old has burst onto the scene at Spurs sooner than expected.

The emergence of Dele Alli has been as unexpected as it has been spectacular and Mauricio Pochettino now faces something of a dilemma.

The 19-year old has impressed at every opportunity so far this season and has now established himself as one of the first names on the teamsheet.

In his first few substitute appearances he featured in an advanced role, as one of the three behind the striker, and he fully showcased his proficiency in that position in the Europa League win over Qarabag.

His link-up play and technical prowess seems suited to a more attacking role, yet it was the box-to-box midfield role in which he made his name at MK Dons.

Recent injuries to the likes of Moussa Dembele, Ryan Mason and Nabil Bentaleb has seen the England international utilised in a deeper role alongside Eric Dier for the past few weeks.

He has acquitted himself perfectly well in central midfield but there is the sense that the full spectrum of his abilities aren’t best utilised so far from the opposition goal.

Dembele has now returned to fitness, with Mason and Bentaleb due to follow soon, meaning Alli will soon be freed up to go and play behind Harry Kane.

The problem for Pochettino then becomes: which attacking midfielder is dropped to cater for the young star?

Christian Eriksen remains Spurs most effective attacking midfielder and is a guaranteed feature, meaning a position either side of him becomes Alli’s best bet.

Heung-Min Son has made an excellent start to his Spurs career and should slot straight back into the first team once fully recovered from a recent foot injury.

Erik Lamela meanwhile, has improved greatly and deserves an extended run in the team, but is likely to be the most threatened by Alli’s progression.

A midfield duo of Mason and Dier behind an interchanging, dynamic front four of Son, Alli, Eriksen and Kane is a fearsome proposition and could well be Spurs' most dangerous line-up.

The detrimental effect of dropping Lamela right as he is showing signs of his true quality could be profound however, and Pochettino will need to tread carefully in the coming weeks.

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