Dele Alli is one of the best young players in the Premier League. In fact, the Tottenham Hotspur midfielder is one of the best young players in the whole of Europe. The England international has progressed massively since his move to Tottenham in 2015 and has established himself as a key player in Mauricio Pochettino’s team.
Alli’s development and quality has reportedly attracted the attention of Real Madrid, who are claimed to be lining up a £50 million bid for the 20-year-old. Madrid have signed players from Spurs before – remember Luka Modric and Gareth Bale? – and many fans of the North London club would be worried about this speculation. After all, when Madrid come calling, it is hard to say no for any footballer.
Madrid are a well-functioning team under Zinedine Zidane and are doing well both in La Liga and in the Champions League. Los Blancos are a forward-looking club who always plan ahead and look to better their first team. One should not be surprised if the Spanish giants do make an approach for Alli, who is the joint-third favourite to win the PFA Player of the Year award according to Betway. The question is whether the youngster should join the 11-time European champions in the summer if he has the chance to.
Leaving Tottenham for Madrid would be a step up. After all, Alli would be playing for the biggest club on the planet and with world-class players such as Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale and Karim Benzema. Would he be able to resist the chance to compete for top honours year after year and play against the best teams in the Champions League regularly? Wouldn’t Alli want to work under the legendary Zidane?
While the temptation is obvious, Alli should also consider other aspects before making a decision, if indeed he is made an offer in the summer. Would the youngster play regularly? Would he be deployed in his favoured role in midfield? Given that the England international is only 20 years of age, he simply cannot waste his talent and potential warming the substitutes’ bench.
Another question that should be asked is whether Alli is ready for Madrid. The Tottenham midfielder is arguably the best young player in the Premier League at the moment, but he can be inconsistent and can have issues with his temperament (remember his punch on Claudio Yacob?). Madrid are a ruthless club and are not averse to making harsh decisions even if they are to the detriment of the players concerned.
If Alli is to succeed at Madrid, then he has to show that he is the finished article. At this stage of his career, the Tottenham youngster is not, and perhaps it would be best for his career if he remains at White Hart Lane for two more years. The former Milton Keynes Dons midfielder is very young, and if he continues to progress and grow as a footballer, then Madrid and other big clubs will continue to knock on the door.