Dele Alli set to have season ended with three-game ban

The Tottenham midfielder is alledged to have punched Claudio Yacob in the stomach

The Spurs midfielder Dele Alli has decided to accept a Football Association charge of violent conduct. He is likely to be punished with a three-game ban, which would end his domestic season.

The charge relates to an incident with West Brom's Claudio Yacob during Monday's 1-1 draw at White Hart Lane, in which the 20-year-old England international appeared to punch his opponent in the stomach.

The England midfielder, named as the Professional Footballers’ Association’s young player of the year on Sunday night, is expected to be suspended for Tottenham’s final three games, against Chelsea, Southampton and Newcastle United. Alli’s next involvement could be for England in their warm-up fixtures for Euro 2016.

An FA statement on Tuesday read: “Dele Alli has been charged for an alleged act of violent conduct which was not seen by the match officials but caught on video.


“The Tottenham Hotspur midfielder was involved in an incident with West Bromwich Albion’s Claudio Yacob in the 26th minute of the game last night (Monday 25 April 2016).”

Spurs’ draw against the Baggies means the Foxes need a maximum of three more points to win the title.

Alli was upended twice by Yacob early in the game and his frustration boiled over as he turned and appeared to swing an arm into the West Brom midfielder’s midriff.

The referee Mike Jones did not see the incident, allowing it to be referred to a panel of three former elite referees to decide if it was worthy of retrospective action.

The Tottenham head coach Mauricio Pochettino suggested after the match that Alli had become a target for provocation.

”I hear some comments but I have no time to see the action,” Pochettino said.

”Sometimes the opponent find him and try to provoke, they know he has a strong character and may react.

”I don’t know what has happened, we will see. I have nothing to comment now but Dele has a strong character if you wind him up.”

Alli has a short fuse and he has been involved in a couple of scrapes during his breakthrough season at the highest level.

In January the Crystal Palace manager, Alan Pardew, accused him of stamping on Yohan Cabaye and in February Alli was booked for kicking out at Fiorentina's Nenad Tomovic in a Europa League last-32 match. He could have been sent off.

(Guardian service)