Speaking to Sky Sports after Tottenham Hotspur beat Manchester United 6-1 at Old Trafford, Mourinho said that he had no problem with Alli, and that the midfielder is not playing only because of certain other requirements in the middle of the park.
Alli started the first Tottenham Hotspur game of the Premier League season, a 1-0 loss to Everton. He was taken off at half-time in that game, and has not started a game since.
That has led to intense speculation on whether the Englishman has a future at Tottenham Hotspur under Mourinho.
Mourinho went on to reiterate last night that Alli has been good in training, and that he was impressed with the Englishman's attitude.
"He never stopped showing, I always thought that. I never had a problem with him. Very polite and educated, behaving well and training well," Mourinho said.
"If sometimes I want different things from him on the pitch that’s more about his qualities as his player.
"He was on the bench, in a team and squad where it’s going to be difficult to play."
Alli faces fight to break back into Tottenham Hotspur midfield
Alli was on the bench for the thrashing at Old Trafford. He also came on in the second half, as Spurs piled on the misery on the Red Devils, on their way to winning 6-1.
With Mourinho seemingly having faith in Tanguy Ndombele already, and new signing Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg looking like a sure starter, Alli has a fight on his hands to win his place in the starting XI.
He needn't look too far for inspiration, though. Ndombele was chastised by Mourinho for most of last season, but has now fought back to win his place in the side.
The Spurs midfield wears a settled look for now, so it seems like Alli's chances, for the moment, are likely to be in the form of substitute appearances.
With Spurs also playing in the Europa League, it is likely that Mourinho will need to use the entirety of his squad in the next few months, which could open up an opportunity for Alli.Published 05 Oct 2020, 16:51 IST