Analysis: "He's got all the tools" - Danny Murphy on Dele Alli
10 January 2017|Tottenham Hotspur
Former Spurs and England midfielder Danny Murphy, who counted the likes of Steven Gerrard, Frank Lampard, Paul Scholes and David Beckham amongst his team-mates on club and international duty and is now a respected pundit on Match of the Day, Five Live and TalkSport, runs his professional eye over Dele Alli, who has been in sensational form for us of late...
- Over 700 league appearances for Crewe, Liverpool, Charlton, Spurs, Fulham and Blackburn - 1993-2013
- 29 appearances for Spurs, 2005-06, 2006-07
- Treble of FA Cup, League Cup and UEFA Cup for Liverpool 2000-01
- Nine caps for England
Danny on Dele
"First of all, he’s playing with a maturity beyond his years. I remember when I first went to Liverpool, it took me a couple of seasons to really settle in. He’s taken it all in his stride. In terms of his ability, he’s a super athlete, tall, quick, looks like he can run all day but matched with that, technically he’s very good as well.
"His biggest quality on the pitch, for me, is the timing of his runs. He is exceptional at that and that is what gets him into the positions to score the goals. He knows when to go and he finds space, that’s his biggest quality.
Below: Danny in action for Spurs
"He’s ahead of his time in terms of football maturity and game intelligence. It’s not something you see, it’s something he’s got. Everything else you see with your eyes, if that makes sense, so you might go and ask 10 fans ‘what is Dele’s biggest quality’ and you’ll get different answers – his pace, his running, his finishing – but that maturity is something that you know when you’ve played. You are watching him and you think ‘he’s got no fear’. He’s playing with the confidence you normally only get after playing 100 or 200 games, not after five minutes of being in the Premier League!
"He now has to make sure that he continues to learn from the coaches at Spurs - he’s clearly learned a lot from Mauricio Pochettino - and he needs to maintain his discipline and desire. There is no end to how far he can go with his ability.
Below: Dele heads home the second goal against Chelsea
"He’s got a bit of everything and normally when you are in midfield you are really good at one or two things – a creator, a destroyer - but when you can do both and you’ve got the legs as well, he can put in a tackle, he can track back, he can do a disciplined job when he needs to, he’s got all the tools he needs.
"He should really be one of the first names on England’s teamsheet because there aren’t many like him, there aren’t that many players who have that ability to continually get into great areas and put themselves into goalscoring positions from a midfield area.
Below: Danny on TV duty with Paul Scholes
"The Tottenham style really suits him as well and the quality of players around him has helped him. For example, in the Chelsea game, he scored both goals, both great headers, but the crosses in from Christian Eriksen were wonderful. You need that quality around you as well. He has a great partnership with Harry Kane and Spurs have one of the best, if not the best, back fours in the Premier League, plus the likes of Dembele and Wanyama. Everything suits him at the moment and I think he’s done remarkably well."
Coming later this week - Danny takes a look at Spurs v West Brom...