Football

Tottenham's Dele Alli tangles with Fiorentina defender Nenad Tomovic.

Mauricio Pochettino to curb Dele Alli's temperamental side

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Mauricio Pochettino is preparing to teach Dele Alli to rein in the uglier side of his game.

The Tottenham midfielder was arguably the best player for the visitors to Fiorentina on Thursday night - where the two sides played out a 1-1 draw in the opening leg of the Europa League round of 32 clash.

But he was lucky to be on the pitch beyond the 30-minute mark having appeared to kick out at La Viola defender Nenad Tomovic.

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The 19-year-old was cautioned after Tomovic reacted angrily following a foul from Alli, with replays appearing to show the Spurs man made no effort to jump clear of the defender and instead caught him with a boot.

Tomovic was further frustrated when he was adjudged to have fouled Ben Davies to concede a dubious penalty which was scored by Nacer Chadli.

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Fiorentina earned a draw courtesy of a deflected second-half strike from Federico Bernardeschi, leaving the tie wide open ahead of the second leg at White Hart Lane next Thursday.

But the spotlight was on Alli's attitude, especially given the fact the England international was recently accused of stamping on Crystal Palace midfielder Yohan Cabaye by Eagles' boss Alan Pardew.

"We need to look at the video and try to teach him," he said.

"He is a young player and he has a lot to learn about elite football. It his first season in the Premier League at Tottenham.

"He came from League One, he needs to learn a lot, still learn. But I didn't see (the incident). Some people say yes, say no, so I don't know."

Fiorentina v Tottenham Hotspur - UEFA Europa League Round of 32: First Leg

Fiorentina finished the game strongly and came within inches of winning the tie when captain Gonzalo Rodriguez glanced a header just wide of Michel Vorm's post in injury time.

And head coach Paulo Sousa believes a first-leg victory would have not been flattering to his side, who knocked Spurs out of the competition at the same stage last season.

"It was a performance that got better as time went on in terms of intensity and quality," he said.

"At the end we didn't get the result we wanted, as we would've deserved victory. We proved once again that we have the desire to compete at these levels.

"We'll see in the return leg if we can make the whole city and country proud of us too. It's important to give a certain image of our football abroad."

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Topics:
Premier League
Europa League
Gareth Bale
Football
Tottenham Hotspur

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