The midfielder was sad to see an ‘amazing’ coach leave Spurs this week, but is already looking forward to a new era under the Portuguese
Dele Alli has expressed his gratitude and sympathy towards sacked Tottenham head coach Mauricio Pochettino, while also opening up on his ambitions under the Argentine’s replacement, Jose Mourinho.
Pochettino was dismissed on Tuesday after a disastrous start to the 2019-20 campaign which has seen the Lilywhites drop to 14th in the Premier League standings.
The 47-year-old transformed Spurs into a regular top-four side, while also overseeing an extraordinary run to the Champions League final last season.
However, club chairman Daniel Levy decided that a change was necessary for the team to start competing for major trophies, with perennial winner Mourinho drafted in to succeed Pochettino on Wednesday morning.
Ahead of a crucial trip to West Ham on Saturday afternoon, Alli has paid tribute to Pochettino for his work in north London and reflected on the great strides forward Tottenham made under his stewardship.
“There’s no hiding how I feel about The Poch,” the 23-year-old told TalkSPORT. “He’s an amazing person who helped me a lot in my career and in [my personal] life as well.
“He’s someone who definitely means a lot to me. Poch built something amazing here and a lot of players owe a lot to him in terms of how much we’ve improved being here and playing at Tottenham.
“Words can’t describe how much we care about him, and how thankful I am and the team are to him as well. But this is football and things like this happen. We have to turn it around now and focus on the new challenges ahead.
“With the new manager coming in, we just have to build trust again and make sure we get ready and playing the way we know we can. It’s the start of a new chapter.”
Mourinho has already insisted he is happy with the squad he has inherited at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium and has no desire to make wholesale changes in the January transfer window.
The Portuguese is eager to get the best out of talismanic figures Harry Kane and Alli, with the latter looking forward to a “new challenge” under a two-time Champions League winner.
“We’ve had a few conversations, he [Mourinho] seems very nice,” he added. “You can see his desire, which is something our old gaffer had as well.
“It’s still very early doors but we’re excited for the new challenge and personally I’m very excited for the new challenge as well.
“When Poch came in he built something that is ready to win trophies. Obviously it’s down to the chairman to make decisions whether or not he thinks that’s not going to happen with the manager, or if he wants a new manager to come in.
“But, as players, we’re hungry. We’ve always been hungry. We’ve always wanted to win, that’s where our mentality is. With a new manager coming in now, our hunger is still the same. We still want to achieve the same things, it’s just with a different manager.
“It’s been a strange and tough time, but we’re professionals so we have to switch our focus to the weekend and we’ve still got a job to do.”
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