Tottenham ace who offered ‘no energy’ and ‘wasn’t at the races’ slammed after Arsenal loss

In pictures: Arsenal v Tottenham

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Arsenal legend Tony Adams has aimed criticism at Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Dele Alli after his performance in Sunday’s north London derby. Alli was hooked at half-time as Arsenal thumped Tottenham 3-1 at the Emirates Stadium.

Alli was part of a three-man midfielder torn apart in the first half by a blistering Arsenal team looking to make a statement.

Emile Smith Rowe opened the scoring in the 12th minute before turning provider for Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang on the half-hour mark.

Bukayo Saka assisted the opener and scored a goal of his own seven minutes later, adding to the misery of a dire day for Alli.

Spurs improved after Nuno Espirito Santo replaced Alli with Oliver Skipp at half-time, and Son Heung-min netted a late consolation goal.

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After full-time, Adams singled out Alli for criticism and damned Tottenham for their lack of energy in such a big game.

He told Sky Sports: “I don’t like picking individuals out because it could be big occasions, but Dele Alli, for me, wasn’t at the races.

“They [Tottenham] didn’t press; there was no energy. You’re playing away at the Emirates; you’re playing the Arsenal; it’s the cup final. You get in there; it’s the first thing you do.”

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Souness suggested that not just Alli but Tottenham’s entire midfield three failed to perform in the first half.

“I was surprised at how good they [Arsenal] looked, [but] it was a bigger surprise how poor Spurs were,” Souness explained.

“The shape was all wrong. Dele Alli standing out wide right, Ndombele emptying midfield at any opportunity.

“You had the Danish player Hojbjerg; he was holding hands with Dier all the time. When you analyse it, there’s no surprise that Arsenal dominated that first half.”

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Gary Neville was also critical of Alli after the game, describing him as a ‘shadow’ of the player he was when he first emerged in the England set-up.

“If they want a warning sign, they should look at Dele Alli,” Neville stated on Sky Sports.

“I had him with England, and I would’ve said that he would’ve become one of the top midfield players that this country has ever produced. He had everything, 6ft 2, could score goals, could tackle, could head.

‘”And now look at him on the football pitch, he’s the shadow of the player he was. Last year I said he needs a wake-up call, but now he needs to sort himself out and quickly.”

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