By 90Min
April 09, 2018

Tottenham attacker Dele Alli has become somewhat of an easy target for rival fans, with a growing reputation for diving and his ability to rile up fans by goading them making him one of England's most polarising players. 

But perhaps the most controversial aspect of Alli's game is his temperament and his instances of violent conduct. In 2016, Alli was suspended for an off the ball incident when he punched West Brom's Claudio Yacob in the stomach. 

The Spurs star was also banned for an aggressive challenge on Brecht Dejaegere in a Europa League match against K.A.A Gent in February 2017

But Alli hopes he has demonstrated that he can control his temper after becoming the target of a number of hard tackles in Tottenham's last Premier League match against Stoke City.

Potters defender Ryan Shawcross let Alli know he was there in the early stages of the match with a hard challenge. Alli was left limping slightly after the tackle, but made sure not to react in a way which could have got him into trouble. 

"I've been trying to improve a lot of aspects of my game and I wanted to keep my head," Alli said post-match, as quoted by ESPN. When the first tackle from Shawcross came in, I knew straight away what he was trying to do with it.

"He's a nice guy and that's the sort of player he is - he's an aggressive player - so I didn't want to react to him. I played my own game and I was really happy with the result."

Alli responded in the best way he could have, setting up Christian Eriksen for the opening goal. Spurs would go on to win the game 2-1. Depending on who you ask, Eriksen scored the second goal, but debate about whether Harry Kane got a touch has apparently caused arguments in the dressing room. 

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