Tottenham Hotspur manager Jose Mourinho has criticised Dele Alli for his performance despite Spurs’ 3-1 win over Stoke City to reach the Carabao Cup semifinals.
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Alli has been out of favour for Mourinho this season but started in Wednesday’s game. However, he was substituted after Stoke’s 37-year-old debut goalkeeper Andy Lonergan thwarted him twice with smart saves.
It was Lonergan’s first competitive game since turning out for third-tier League One team Rochdale in 2019.
Alli also gifted possession to the home side which led to Jordan Thompson’s goal after beating Hugo Lloris in the 53rd minute.
“Yes, for me a player that plays in that position is a player that has to link and create and not to create problems for his own team,” Mourinho said of Alli.
“In that situation, an objective counter-attack would probably end with a goal, and it ended with a counter-attack behind our defenders.
“We were unbalanced because when you are in possession you have full-backs out wide and another midfielder in a different line and they caught us in a counter-attack and they transformed the result of the game that was totally in our hands, so yes I am upset.”
Nonetheless, the London visitors advanced to the cup’s final four thanks to goals from Gareth Bale, Ben Davies and Harry Kane.
Bale was substituted at the break for Son Heung-Min for an apparent injury, although the Portuguese manager said the switch was partly tactical.
“I don’t know. Something I think with calf. I’m not sure as at that time I just wanted to reorganise the team and make the change,” Mourinho said.
Information from Reuters was used in this report.