Dele Alli would have been eager to make an impact during Tottenham Hotspur’s trip to Huddersfield.
It would have been the perfect way to divert the attention away from his one match international ban, which he received following his middle-finger gesture during England’s 2-1 win against Slovakia at the start of the month.
The incident has led to more concerns about Alli’s character following a spate of outbursts but Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino expected him to recover in a positive way.
“Does Dele have the mental strength to handle this? Yes of course," Pochettino said, per Sky Sports.
"He's more mature today. I think you can feel the same. He's not the kid who arrived three years ago.
"A lot of things have happened in that period and he's mature enough to deal with the situation."
Erm, about that.
Alli produced a ridiculous dive against Huddersfield
None of Alli’s supposed maturity was on show during Spurs’ trip to Huddersfield.
The north London outfit were cruising to victory, up 3-0 following Harry Kane’s superb first half, when the 21-year-old attempted to trick referee Neil Swarbrick into awarding a penalty with a woeful dive.
Swarbrick was wise to Alli’s simulation and showed the youngster a yellow card.
Twitter ruined Alli
Needless to say fans on Twitter were fuming with Alli, with Gary Lineker leading the responses.
“More Daley than Dele. Needs to cut the occasional nonsense from his game,” Lineker wrote.
Check out the reaction below.
It was wrong and entirely unnecessary, too.
There’s never a right place to dive but you could have understood Alli’s actions if Tottenham were desperate.
But they weren’t. Harry Kane’s brace and Ben Davies’ finish had given Pochettino’s side a 3-0 lead which Huddersfield were never going to recover from.
Alli has all the talent in the world but he’s making an awkward reputation for himself.
The England international will miss Thursday’s World Cup qualifier at home to Slovenia after he was punished by FIFA for that gesture to Kyle Walker.
He was also fined £3,852 by the governing body.
A FIFA statement read: “Although the disciplinary committee was not convinced that the player directed the gesture at the referee, and regardless of whether it was allegedly directed at a team-mate, it did consider such gesture to be offensive and unsporting.”
Maybe he'll learn one day.