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Harry Redknapp admits he loves Dele Alli's devilish side, says he's not just a good footballer

The former Tottenham Hotspur manager enjoys the youngsters fiery attitude but admits he fell for Claudio Yacob's wind-up tactics on Monday night.

Former Tottenham Hotspur manager Harry Redknapp has admitted to talkSPORT that he loves to see the "devilment" in Dele Alli's play as it makes him more than merely a good footballer.

Alli could well face a retrospective punishment as he appeared to punch West Bromwich Albion midfielder Claudio Yacob in the stomach during the club' 1-1 draw at White Hart Lane on Monday night.

That follows an incident earlier this season against Fiorentina in the Europa League when he seemed to kick a defender for the Italian club whilst the player was on the floor.

Redknapp insists that the 20-year-old cannot go around throwing punches or being violent, but admits that the PFA Young Player of the Year's devilish attitude gives him an extra edge on top of his footballing talent.

The Derby County director of football told talkSPORT: "He's got that little bit of devilment in him – which I like, to be honest. I don't want to see him throwing punches, obviously, but he's not just a good footballer.

"He's not a lad you can just kick out of the game by being aggressive with him. He comes back at you, he can hand it out as well as take it, and I like that. Clearly he's over-reacted to Yacob, and you can't do that.

"Certainly Yacob will have gone out with the intention of winding him up, getting in his face, be niggly with him all game, not just to kick him off the park. The kid has bought it and he's over-reacted. But it's all part of him learning the game – he's still only a baby, he's a fantastic talent and I love watching him play."

Whilst Redknapp appears to approve of Alli's aggressive edge, the 20-year-old has been warned by others that he may have to stamp out that side of him if he is to continue his career's upwards trajectory.

The midfielder is expected to play a big role for England at Euro 2016 this summer, and in both that tournament and next season's Champions League he will face European referees and UEFA who may not be so forgiving of his indiscretions.

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