Tottenham Hotspur boss Mauricio Pochettino has been talking his club up ahead of their crunch Champions League clash against Real Madrid on Tuesday evening, claiming that Dele Alli is a future Ballon d'Or winner and that Spurs are a sleeping giant.
In an interview with Spanish outlet AS, the Spurs manager spoke enthusiastically about the transition he has overseen during his three year spell in north London, and took the time to praise his squad ahead of their Champions League game. Addressing the potential of Dele Alli becoming a future Ballon d'Or winner, the manager claimed:
"Why not? It's true he's at a completely different stage in his career right now, but Dele has potential, he has the ability, and that energy, that aura, that you can't ignore.
"We hope so, he's still young, and he still needs to improve and learn a lot of things. We trying to give him the best tools so he gain stability at this time when it's hard to maintain it."
Moving on to praise the overall development of the club in recent years, from a Europa League side to a Champions League outfit, the Argentinean manager spoke enthusiastically about the rise in stature the club is undergoing, claiming:
"Tottenham were a sleeping giant, I was just speaking about it to the chairman, Daniel Levy.
"But with everything he's built in 18 years, in six, seven or eight months, when the new stadium is ready, it's going to be a completely different club to what it historically was. It's a source of pride to be part of that vision."
Spurs currently sit third in the Premier League table, after a solid, if not spectacular start to the campaign. Tuesday evening's game in Madrid will be a huge test for Pochettino's men, and could be an indicator of just how far his young side have come on in their development.