Newcastle United star Kieran Trippier has claimed that Everton ace Dele Alli's fall from grace could be traced back to Mauricio Pochettino's exit from his former club Tottenham Hotspur.
Alli, 26, has been on the decline for quite a while after taking the Premier League by storm during his six-and-a-half year stint at Spurs. Operating in an advanced role, he helped the north London outfit put up back-to-back title charges under his former manager Pochettino.
A technical midfielder renowned for his shooting and positioning, Alli bagged two successive PFA Young Player of the Year awards in 2016 and 2017. Overall, the 37-cap England international scored 67 goals and contributed 61 assists in 269 appearances for Tottenham.
Speaking on Under The Cosh, Trippier insisted that Pochettino had a hand in Alli's rapid development during his initial years at Spurs. He said:
"Poch was brilliant with Dele to be fair and Dele was flying at Tottenham. It's one where I left and went to Atletico Madrid and he was there for two years after. Even during my last season, there he was flying, he's a great lad, but Poch was brilliant with him."
After Pochettino's departure as Spurs boss in 2019, Alli failed to maintain his level under Jose Mourinho and Antonio Conte. He joined Everton in January this year on a free transfer and failed to register a single goal contribution in 11 Premier League games last season.
Earlier this summer, Alli was shipped out to Super Lig outfit Besiktas on a season-long loan deal with an option to buy. So far, he has scored just two goals in eight appearances for his new club this season.
Trippier, on the other hand, left Spurs to join Atletico Madrid in 2019. After helping Diego Simeone's side lift the 2020-21 La Liga trophy, he joined a rejuvenated Newcastle United in January this year.
Paul Merson picks between Newcastle United star and Liverpool ace for England's 2022 FIFA World Cup starting lineup
In his column for Daily Star, ex-Arsenal man Paul Merson opined about England's first-team selection at the ongoing 2022 FIFA World Cup.
Merson said that he would prefer Liverpool superstar Trent Alexander-Arnold over Newcastle United right-back Kieran Trippier in England's group-stage matches at the tournament in Qatar. He wrote:
"Kieran Trippier is an outstanding footballer but there are horses for courses. I would play Trent Alexander-Arnold in all of England's group games. He's the best passer of the ball in the country. We've seen how quickly players can get injured, so Iran could be the perfect game to utilise his quality and get him into the side."
Trippier, 32, has been in fine form for Newcastle in the ongoing campaign, scoring one goal and contributing four assists in 17 games so far. Alexander-Arnold, on the other hand, has registered three goals in 20 appearances for Liverpool across all competitions this season.
Paul Merson predicts Man City vs Liverpool and other Premier League GW 29 fixtures! Click here