Spurs star on facing former idol Jason Puncheon
Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Dele Alli says it will be strange to go up against former hero Jason Puncheon when his side face Crystal Palace tomorrow.
Puncheon was at MK Dons when Alli was coming through the ranks. Although he managed to swerve cleaning the 29-year-old’s boots, Alli admits that Puncheon was a player he looked up to.
He told The Sun: “Jason was a really good player and all the young lads used to watch him and say how good he was.
“No, I didn’t clean his boots — now that would have been a story — I cleaned the gaffer’s!
“But Jason was definitely a player I looked up to. He was really exciting to watch.
“Everybody thought he was the best player at MK and he is showing how good he is now in the Premier League.
“Playing against him will be a bit weird, but I am looking forward to the challenge if I get picked.”
Alli signed for Spurs from the Dons in a £5m deal in the January transfer window, before linking up with the north London side this summer.
The 19-year-old has quickly established himself as a first-team regular for Mauricio Pochettino’s side.
Puncheon played for MK Dons early in his career, but made his mark on the young Alli during three loan spells to his old club in the space of two years, between 2008 and 2010, when he was struggling for opportunities at Plymouth Argyle.
He subsequently moved to Southampton, but is arguably playing the best football of his career at Palace.